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Fri 01 Apr 2022

Quick-thinking Pardo’s mechanic skills pay off

Javier Pardo put his skills as a mechanic to full use on his way to scoring more FIA European Rally Championship points on the Azores Rallye last week.

Pardo, the 2021 ERC2 champion, was on course to finish fifth on the São Miguel event when his Skoda Fabia Rally2 Evo was struck by a technical issue with three stages remaining.

Although the subsequent delay dropped him to an eventual 13th-place overall finish, had it not been for his quick thinking and ingenuity, the Spaniard could have dropped further down the order or even retired, as he explained.

“Before the Power Stage I changed the driveshaft to the rear from the front because in the first stage of the section a driveshaft at the front broke and came out of the car in the middle of the road,” said the 25-year-old Pardo.

“Feteiras and Sete Cidades made with only rear traction was very difficult to manage and of course we lose all the time. So I change my mind a little and said, ‘okay, it’s difficult to drive like this so we will try to change the driveshaft so it’s better for the last stage’.”

Pardo, who was helped in making the emergency repairs by co-driver Adrián Pérez, continued: “It’s the first time I change the driveshaft in this car but it was more or less easy, but we had to do it very quickly because there was not a lot of time in the road section and the regroup. It was difficult but it was no problem in the end.”

Looking back on his second Azores appearance, Pardo added: “It was a good rally for learning but not perfect because there were two or three mistakes from me and I was not lucky that the driveshaft broke. I need to improve a lot in the wet conditions, but when the conditions are dry it’s possible to push a lot and set good times, so this is good.”