Devine Roma ERC1 Junior retirement reason revealed
Callum Devine’s exit from the FIA ERC1 Junior Championship fight on Rally di Roma Capitale last week was the result of a freak occurrence, it has been revealed.
Devine had been expected to fight for a class podium in Italy at the wheel of a Hyundai i20 R5 but he’d yet get into his stride when a mechanical failure forced him out at the stop line of the third stage of day one.
“We were slightly disappointed with our start and knew we had much more in us,” said the Motorsport Ireland Rally Academy driver. “We were just starting to get into a flow on stage three and building up speed.
“To try and be on the pace on these events you have to cut where you can and carry as much speed as possible. There was a fast corner through a dip which we cut and there was a bang as we went over some stones. We didn’t think much of it as it’s not unusual to hear noises like that while cutting a corner. But slowly the engine began to lose oil and then the oil pressure light came on 200 metres from the finish of the stage. We stopped the engine and coasted over the finish but that was game over.
“It turned out that in the compression a stone punched through the sumpguard and holed the sump, causing the engine to lose all its oil. I could probably take that corner 100 times and it would never happen again, it was just a freak thing but when you’re trying that card is always in the deck I suppose.
“I’m really disappointed for the whole team after all the effort that went into the weekend, I know we would have been in contention for a decent result.”
Devine will get another chance to demonstrate his pace and potential in Italy when he contests Rally di Alba this weekend. He’s been invited to take part on the asphalt event in an i i20 R5 run by the HMI Team.
“The opportunity to do Alba came about through Andrew Johns in Hyundai Motorsport Customer Racing and I’m very thankful for the opportunity,” said Devine. “There’s over 30 R5 cars on the entry list and we’ll have a great benchmark with Craig Breen, Dani Sordo, Luca Rossetti, Ole Christian Veiby and Jari Huttunen all entered in Hyundai R5 cars.”