A gearbox failure led Lappi to his Safari retirement

Esapekka Lappi says that his retirement was caused by a gearbox issue in Stage 5 of Safari Rally, but he was satisfied with the speed he had on Friday stages.

The Finn driver was in second place overall and kept his teammate Ott Tanak behind for 1,3 seconds at the end of Friday morning loop, but he was struggling with the suspension damping of his i20N. The big disappointment for him came when he had to pull over 9.8 Km into SS5 as the gearbox was broken resulting in not being able to conclude the day. However, Hyundai mechanics managed to fix his car for Saturday and he will restart under the SuperRally regulations which means that he will open the roads tomorrow.

"The day was going well until we had to retire due to a gearbox issue; first the car was front-wheel drive only after an acceleration, and ultimately I couldn’t move the car, so we had to roll back from the hairpin because we were stuck", Lappi said. 

"There was no major impact or noise – of course there were plenty of impacts on the stages, but none of them should have caused this problem. 

"It is a shame as the splits were good, as was this morning. 

"We lost ground to Kalle but I was very satisfied with the speed that I had in the car and it was going well until that failure".

Photo Credits: Hyundai

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