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Sensor fault dropped Lindholm from the winning battle

17.06.2019 / Marko Mäkinen

Rally’s SM-series season’s fifth competition, Pohjanmaa Rally, victory was resolved on the last special stage of the competition. Volkswagen’s Emil Lindholm, who was on a good speed all day, rose from Friday’s fifth place to fight for the number one spot on Saturday.

Before the last special stage began the split time to the fastest driver was 3,1 seconds. The clock from the crucial last special stage was telling that Lindholm was seriously battling to win the competition but about four kilometers before the finish line Team GRX’s Volkswagen started to lose power. The engine’s backup system went on and the twosomes speed fell drastically to almost walking pace.

About 500 meters before the finish line the car’s full potential kicked in but it was too late. The malfunction cost them almost two minutes and the big SM-points they needed changed to a sixth place on the SM1-class.

“This competition was an emotional roller coaster. On Friday we were a little lost with the adjustments of the suspension and our car wasn’t working on the wet roads. On Saturday morning we changed the adjustments and everything worked excellent. The difference was like night and day and I caught the top times but rally is rally and anything can happen. This is how it went this time. We still don’t know why our car came alive 500 meters before the finish line. If it would have done it three seconds sooner we would have been one position higher on the standings”, Lindholm says.

In Rally SM-series SM1-class points Lindholm and Korhonen are continuing in third position but the point differential to the top two drivers grew significantly.

“To win the championship we need other drivers help. Now the tactics for the two last SM-rallies are clear, full throttle and to the victory. We don’t have any other choices”, Lindholm says.

The next SM-series competition SM Oili Jalonen Rally is driven last weekend of August in Laitila. Before this Lindholm and Korhonen are participating in early August in the Rally Finland in Jyväskylä.

“Before Jyväskylä the car will be serviced and inspected. The season’s highlight is ahead of us”, Lindholm reminds.

Photo: Merita Mäkinen

Score top 5

1. Teemu Asunmaa / Jani Salo 102 points Alavuden UA (R5)
2. Juha Salo / Topi Luhtinen 99 points Karkkilan UA (R5)
3. Emil Lindholm / Mikael Korhonen 67 points NHD (R5)
4. Kristian Kiviniemi / Enni Mälkönen 51 points ParkUA (R5)
5. Jari Ketomaa / Marko Sallinen 39 points MikUA ()

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Calendar 2019

Rally Location Date
1. Arctic Lapland Rally Rovaniemi 24.-26.1.
2. SM O.K. Auto-ralli Kouvola 15.-16.2.
3. SM-Itäralli Joensuu 2.3.
4. SM Riihimäki Ralli
Riihimäki 24.-25.5.
5. Pohjanmaa Ralli
Seinäjoki 14.-15.6.
6. SM Oili Jalonen Ralli
Laitila  30.-31.8.
7. SM Ralli Salo-Turku
Turku-Salo 27.-28.9.

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