There was plenty of frustration for Clint Cunningham at the Trusthouse Racetech Rally Wairarapa over the weekend, which doubled as round four of the Brian Green Property Group New Zealand Rally Championship and round two of the Total Lubricants Rally Xtreme challenge.
Cunningham made a near-perfect start to the Rally Xtreme series in the RCK Contractors Mitsubishi Evo 4 at Rally Hawkes Bay with a class win and sixth overall, so came into the Masterton based event full of confidence.
The event started well for the West Aucklander on a treacherous opening stage, where Cunningham not only survived the conditions but set a time that put him eighth in NZRC, seventh in Xtreme and leading the XT1 class for pre-2000 four-wheel drive cars.
Unfortunately for Cunningham and co-driver Greg Ruka, the good run would not continue into the second stage with the car developing a misfire and eventually grinding to a halt, forcing their retirement.
After working hard to get the car back out for the power stage, the RCK Contractors team were forced to admit defeat when it was found the surge tank was flaking, blocking the fuel filters and injectors.
“I’m gutted to be fair. We had plenty of reasons to be confident of a good result, but it just wasn’t to be,” said Cunningham. “At least we can drop our worst round and still chase the XT1 title.”
The RCK Contractors Rally Team now head for round three of the Rally Xtreme series, the Taranaki Tarmac Rally, on July 12.
Press Release by BB Media