Rangiora’s Matt Summerfield has left his home round of the Brian Green Property Group New Zealand Rally Championship, the Joe’s Garage/Lonestar Rally Canterbury, gutted after an engine problem saw him retire from the lead.
Summerfield and co-driver Nicole Summerfield came to the event looking to make the finish after failing to complete the previous three years.
A sensible approach in tricky conditions saw the Castrol Edge machine take a solid lead of almost seven seconds through the opening special stage, but things would go wrong on the second stage when an exhaust cam wheel broke, causing a major engine failure.
“I’m gutted to be fair, we made a strong start without taking any risks and for the second event in a row, it was really over before it started,” said Summerfield. “There are plenty of positives to take away from the event, we know the speed is there, now we just have to make it through an event. It makes me really want to go to Gisborne, because I know that we have the speed.”
The team will now strip the engine and make a decision around their participation at the next championship round, Rally Gisborne, which runs on July 2.
Matt Summerfield Rallisport would like to acknowledge their sponsors, without whom their 2016 campaign would not be possible: Castrol Edge, Autotech Services, Brita Safety, Clearwater Painting, North Canterbury Energy Centre, The Gearbox Company, I C Frith Insurance Brokers, Chatterton Builders, Liquorland, Good Street Dental and No Limit Construction.
Press Release by BB Media