New Zealander Michael Young had a disappointing end to the International Rally of Queensland, the third round of the Asia Pacific Rally Championship (APRC) after the tricky road conditions caught him out prior to the midday service causing his end to the rally.
20 year old Young, piloting his Cusco TRD Toyota Vitz RS, was forced into retirement after the car left the road in a tricky fast, downhill section of Special Stage 17 (SS17) leaving the team bitterly disappointed.
“I’m still not exactly sure what happened,” said Young, “but a bump in the road caused the car to unbalance sending us wide and into a bank. We then spun backwards down the road and somehow ended up upside down in the ditch.”
“It’s almost unlucky in a way as we would have gotten away with it [the spin] and been able to carry on if the ditch wasn’t there. It was a really slow roll over onto our roof and that was it.”
The unfortunate incident was the end of what had otherwise been a successful rally for the Cusco TRD Team with Young setting top stage times all weekend, sometimes as high as fourth overall in the APRC race.
“There is one big positive we can take away from this event and that was the speed that we had. We were very happy with some of the times we were setting, especially against some of the four-wheel-drive cars.”
“We had the puncture yesterday which was also disappointing but other than that, we were having a great weekend. We had a few good battles with Adrian [Coppins] and we were impressed with just how well the Cusco Toyota was performing.”
Young is the only registered New Zealander in the APRC this year and hopes to continue flying the flag for New Zealand in the remainder of the APRC events, set to be held in Malaysia, Japan and China.
“Obviously we now have a lot of work to do before we can think about going to Malaysia but we’ll be trying everything we can to get there.”
The next round for Young and the Cusco TRD team is the Malaysian Rally, set to be held on the 23-25 August, 2013.
Young’s APRC campaign is supported by CUSCO, Toyota Racing Developments, Dunlop and Yoda Rallying.
Michael Young, Daniel Willson and the rest of the Cusco TRD team would also like to extend their heartfelt condolences to all of those who were affected by the tragedy at the International Rally of Queensland today. Their thoughts are with the family and friends of those involved.
Media Release: Alana McIsaac (July, 2013)