19.08.2011 - No luck at Rally Germany - out after crash

After such a successful rehearsal at the rally Oberehe Valentin Hummel and Katja Geyer travelled to Trier with anticipation for the season's highlight: the World Championship run of ADAC Rally Germany. The whole week was already filled with the recce schedule, organisational matters and adjustment of the car, until the beginning on Thursday evening with the show start through the Porta Nigra. Unfortunately, the rally should be very short ...

Out of respect for the forthcoming battle of material both had decided not to participate in the shakedown on Thursday afternoon. Thus it was more difficult for the driver, however, to have the right feeling for the car directly on SS1 and to prepare for the new challenges. After all, it was their first rally with such long and demanding stages. After about 15 km on SS1 they took a camber from the wrong side as a result of a false passage in their pace notes, whereupon the Citroen landed sideways in the grass. The rear broke away and due to the car’s compactness and the short wheelbase it wasn’t possible to get it under control again. After a rotation of 180 degrees it took backwards an earth wall, where the left rear wheel was demolished on an asphalt edge. Due to the inclination of the wall, the car finally came down after a roll over the roof. Fortunately Valentin and Katja remained completely unhurt, but they were visibly disappointed.

The subsequent damage analysis report revealed several important points for the young team on which they are already working. For example, that the participation at the shakedown may represent a good possibility for the team to prepare for the upcoming rally and that in particular the pacenote system for cambers must be refined. The respective camber had always its reputation for being very treacherous, and since Valentin was on the circuit never confronted with cambers, this is certainly one of the most important experiences that can only be acquired through many SS km.

Valentin and Katja spent almost the entire Friday next to this camber, as the track was hardly accessible from outside to pick up the Citroen and the team. Both watched how the other teams handeled the camber and discussed their appropriate driving maneuvers. When the SS was released, both drove again following their pace notes on the track to find the fault and erase it in the truest sense of the word for next year, when they will come back - and do it better!