Eric Camilli endured a frustrating Day 1 on the 2016 Dayinsure Wales Rally GB, suffering a double puncture on the opening loop.
The young Frenchman suffered two tyre punctures on the opening stage and then on SS3.
Having used up his spare wheel on the first puncture, he had to nurse the second punctured wheel through the morning’s final stage (SS4) until he could reach service.
Despite having lost up to five minutes because of this, he successfully made it to the remote tyre fitting zone in Newtown.
With his Fiesta RS WRC clad with a fresh set of Michelin soft compound tyres, Camilli climbed five places to end the opening day in eleventh place, just 30 seconds down on tenth place.
Despite the day one problems, Camilli is pleased with his pace, having matched his more experienced team-mate Mads Østberg, several times throughout the day.
Having come into the rally with the objective of increasing his knowledge and understanding of gravel stages, this is a welcome development.
He is also keen to continue his progression up the leader-board and gain addition positions at the event continues.
“It’s not been an easy day but we are still here and that is the important thing” he said.
“It was a shame for us this morning as we had two very rare punctures and we don’t fully understand why. That’s life sometimes, and this afternoon we decided to continue on the same rhythm.
“This is never an easy rally and at times we were able to match the pace of Mads (Østberg) which is very important for us. He has a lot of experience here so that is a good first step with the experience that we have and we’ll work hard to keep building on that tomorrow.”