Tauranga’s Phil Campbell has had a frustrating run at round two of the New Zealand Rally Championship, showing plenty of speed but any chance of a good result on either day was struck down with problems.

The 24-year-old, along with new co-driver Mal Peden, started the rally with high hopes after showing strong speed at the opening round in Dunedin a month ago. After two second fastest times in the two-wheel drive class, Campbell took the Steel Sheds R’ Us Ford Fiesta to a win on stage three but drama was to follow on the following Hampton Downs super special stage.

A broken axle within sight of the finish of the stage, only a few hundred metres from the safety of service, could not have happened in a better place, but part of the axle jammed in the differential and replacing the broken part was a time consuming affair.

With only 30 minutes available before penalties were applied, the team had a near impossible task and in the end over three minutes worth of penalties were accrued, dropping Campbell to third and to far back to regain second for the day. Adding to the problems, Campbell was starting further down the field and catching slower competitors, although he did manage one further stage win across the afternoon.

Day two was a short one for Campbell, after being right in the hunt with a second fastest time on the opening stage, but a suspension problem saw the car leave the road. After regaining the road, one of the front hubs fell off and it was game over for the team, although the day one result still secured fourth in the two-wheel drive class.

Campbell will be back for round three of the New Zealand Rally Championship, Rally Wairarapa, on May 28-29.

Press Release by BB Media

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