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Fri 17 May 2024

Evans lauds quick-thinking Martin's pace note solution

Elfyn Evans is not dwelling on his dramatic Friday at Vodafone Rally de Portugal, which saw co-driver Scott Martin resort to reading pace notes from a mobile phone.

Panic ensued inside the #33 Toyota GR Yaris Rally1 when, just before starting the Góis stage, the pair realised their pace note book had been misplaced amidst confusion at the stop line of the previous test.

Martin resorted to using his mobile phone to access a digital copy of the notes and, barring an unrelated tyre deflation, they navigated the remaining stages of the day without any major issues.

Reflecting on the moment of realisation, Evans said: “There was no time to say much because we were already at the time control. We were obviously looking for the notes, but once we realised they were gone, Scott said, ‘I’ve got them on the phone, let’s see how we can manage.’”

Evans admitted to being impressed by Martin’s efforts and confirmed that there are no hard feelings between the pair.

“There’s no issue, if you know what I mean, from inside the car,” he assured. “These things happen and there’s no issue.

“I think nothing can really prepare you for reading from a small screen on rough stages like that. I’m sure we lost some time because I was a bit nervous, especially at the beginning, but it actually turned out to be much, much better than I anticipated.”

While Evans remained second in the championship after finishing sixth in Portugal, he now trails Thierry Neuville by 24 points.

The Welshman felt he was held back by the set-up of his car and revealed that a new approach will be required for Rally Italia Sardegna later this month (30 May – 2 June).

“We definitely made progress,” he said. “It’s not all doom and gloom, but I’m sensitive to the car and I like to have it to my liking. It’s difficult now with the testing situation, but we definitely need to come up with some new ideas for Sardinia.”