Rally Portugal: Nikolay Gryazin finished in the top five

Rally Portugal: Nikolay Gryazin finished in the top five
A series of punctures prevented Nikolay Gryazin and Yaroslav Fedorov from completing the first in their career gravel stage of the World Championship on the podium.


After a debut in Sweden and a successful performance at Rallye Tour de Corse, our crew returned to the World Rally Championship. This time Nikolay and Yaroslav toed the starting line of Rally Portugal - the first European gravel event this season, which met them with rough roads and strong heat.
Nikolay Gryazin WRC Rally Portugal 2019
The SRT crew got involved in the fight for leadership, having shown the second fastest time on SS1 from the very first kilometer of the distance: the fact that the route of the first day was unfamiliar to all participants strongly influenced the race and equalized overall chances. However, the tire tactics chosen on Friday according to which medium tires were used in the morning, turned into high tire wear, loss of time and retreat to the 5th place.
Nikolay Gryazin WRC Rally Portugal 2019
Returning to the second loop of the day with hard compound, Nikolay and Yaroslav won one special stage and went to the 4th place, but on the final test of the day they had a puncture. Despite this, the crew completed the first day in the 3rd place.
Nikolay Gryazin WRC Rally Portugal 2019
When the rally route turned into special stages familiar to rivals in Saturday Nikolay began to attack, gradually closing the gap with the 2nd place. Unfortunately, on the final special stage of the morning, our crew punctured rear left tire twice, lost 2.30 minutes and went back to the 7th place.
Nikolay Gryazin WRC Rally Portugal 2019
There was one more trouble: the crew ran out of fuel right on the way to day service. Fortunately, this problem was solved, Nikolay and Yaroslav continued the race, winning two more places back by the end of Saturday but having puncture at the evening Amarante test again.
Nikolay Gryazin WRC Rally Portugal 2019
After working on the mistakes before the final day of the race, the crew made massive progress, each time showing at least the 2nd time on special stages. At the finish, Nikolay conceded to the 4th place holder only 0.8 seconds. Nikolay showed the best time on four special stages in the course of the entire rally.
Nikolay Gryazin WRC Rally Portugal 2019

Nikolay Gryazin
Driver
"Despite the punctures and number of mistakes, we are very pleased with the event. We managed not only to drive the full distance of this very difficult rally, but also to compete in a group of leaders.
Nikolay Gryazin WRC Rally Portugal 2019
We gradually added every day, trying to get rid of mistakes, and went really fast on the final day. On Sunday I was able to attack on special stages, similar in nature to those that caused problems the day before and this fact made my day".
Nikolay Gryazin WRC Rally Portugal 2019
After Rally Portugal, Nikolay Gryazin and Yaroslav Fedorov will drive all the remaining stages of the WRC, except for the Australian one. Rally Sardinia, which will take place from the 13th to the 16th of June, will become the next stop in the crew's program.