Niegel proves a point on Rallye Deutschland
Suzuki Rallye Junior Team Germany driver Florian Niegel has scored a pointon his home event - but his chances of finishing further up the order wereseriously compromised by a mistake on day two of the Rallye Deutschland,when he went off on the opening stage. He was forced to stop and change awheel, with the resulting time loss dropping him from fifth in the Juniorstandings to 10th. Thanks to a valiant effort to make up the lost time, heended the rally in eighth, scoring one Junior World Rally Championshippoint. Although Niegel had the pace to finish much higher up theleaderboard, the young German enjoyed his home rally and learned manyvaluable lessons that will stand him in good stead for the two remainingevents in this year's Junior World Rally Championship: Spain and Corsica.

The last day of the Rallye Deutschland contained fast and flowing asphaltroads that are not dissimilar to those on the next two rallies, givingNiegel - who is in his first year of the Junior World Rally Championship -some valuable experience at the wheel of the Suzuki Swift Super 1600. Thefinal day presented the German with no dramas, as he concentrated on makingit safely to the finish back in Trier.

Also taking part in the event was a privately-entered Swift Super 1600driven by the Danish crew of Martin Johansen and Finn Thomsen, who arecurrently leading their home Super 1600 championship. They dropped time witha puncture on the opening day but then ran reliably to the finish on theirsecond participation in the Rallye Deutschland, ending up 30th overall andfifth in class A6.

The Group N Suzuki Swift Sport of Luxembourg driver Hugo Arellano re-startedday two under the super rally regulations but had to retire again after theopening stage this morning.

The next round of the Junior World Rally Championship is the Catalunya Rally from October 2-5.

News from Florian Niegel (Suzuki Swift n.43):
"It was a pity that we had the problem on the second day as without it Ithink we could have finished comfortably in the points; maybe even in third- which would have been a great result given our level of experience. Still,these things can happen in rallying and it is all part of the learningexperience. Today we just concentrated on trying to get safely to the finishand not making any more mistakes. The car was great throughout the rally,giving us no problems at all, and we enjoyed a lot of local support. It wasfantastic to see so many people out on the Rallye Deutschland this year andI hope we gave them a good show. The most important thing for me is that Ihad plenty of time in the car and I was able to learn many things that willbe useful for the next JWRC rounds on asphalt."

News from Martin Johansen (Suzuki Swift n.70):
"We achieved our objective on this event, which was to get through all thestages without having to resort to super rally - which was the case for uslast year. I enjoyed these stages a lot, even though they are quitedifferent to what we are accustomed to back home in Denmark. We had quite abig gap to the next driver, so there was no point in taking any risks today.Instead we just concentrated on looking after the car and enjoying theexperience of competing here. We had a small clutch problem on thesuperspecial at the end, but apart from that the car was perfect throughoutthe rally."

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