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Emma Gilmour admits to being disappointed with her performance on this weekend’s fourth
round of the Vantage New Zealand Rally Championship in the Hawke’s Bay.
 
Still having to work hard to regain her instinctive driving style after crashing heavily on the
second round of the series back in May, Gilmour had been closing in on a top-six position when
she clipped a rock on the rally’s fifth special stage of this weekend’s event.
 
“We hit the rock so hard it wrenched the steering wheel from my hands and damaged the car’s
steering,” Gilmour said. “As if that wasn’t enough, a flat tyre followed towards the end of the
stage.”
 
The time lost limping through the stage dropped the Dunedin-based driver back to tenth in the
national championship field. Her Vantage Team service crew were able to repair the damaged
steering at the next service break, and Gilmour then regained one place over the two remaining
stages to finish the rally in ninth place.
 
“Even before that it was steady rather than spectacular performance on my part,” Gilmour said.
“The car was great, but it is simply taking me longer to get back in the competitive groove than I
had anticipated.”
 
“I must admit I am finding it quite frustrating, but all I can do is keep working away at things. In
part it is a matter of completing as many competitive kilometres as possible, so if there is a
positive for me out of this weekend it is that I did just that.”
 
Gilmour will now turn her attention to her home round of the world championship, Rally New
Zealand. Along with fellow South Islander and current national championship leader Hayden
Paddon, she is one of two Kiwis to have been awarded a scholarship to contest the Production
World Championship division of the 31 August-2 September event.
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