Mission accomplished! Eric de Seynes and Camelia Liparoti have completed a successful debut together in the YXZ1000R prototype, after four full days of adrenalin packed racing at the Andalucía Rally in Villamartín, Spain.
During the fourth and final stage, the Yamaha pair had to negotiate 296-kilometres of extremely dry and slippery Spanish landscape with a 247-kilometre timed special. Amid challenging conditions, the incredible strength of the YXZ1000R prototype chassis was reaffirmed, allowing the duo to maintain a quick and steady pace consistently throughout the day.
When rally racing at an elite level, communication between the driver and co-driver is of extreme importance, both participants need to be focused, alert, precise and committed. Upon conclusion of the final sector, Eric de Seynes and Camelia Liparoti were thrilled at the significant progress made inside the cockpit. With great rapport, the duo managed to finish the day in 40th position, placing them a creditable 32nd in the overall standings. Their solid result is also very much attributed to the exceptional reliability of the YXZ1000R prototype.
In the Open SSV category, both Franco Sport supported crews suffered technical difficulties. Top qualifiers Mario Franco and Nuno Guilherme were unable to resolve yesterday’s mechanical issue and could not start today, while teammates Manuel and Pedro Breyner were forced to abandon the race 80 kilometres in due to an issue with the rear differential.
Eric de Seynes
Driver: Yamaha YXZ1000R prototype #251
“We’ve been four days in the YXZ1000R prototype, and we were very consistent. We learnt a lot this week, the YXZ1000R prototype chassis is very strong and good, but we do have some areas of improvement to consider, such as the brakes and the engine. Today the stage was so slippery and unpredictable, and I made two big mistakes which we were able to save thanks to the chassis. This gave us the confidence to push, knowing the chassis would not bother us if we were to face any difficulties. It is very safe this was one of the best things we learned this week. The second positive point is that the YXZ1000R prototype is super reliable. With the engine, we are not there yet, but we are also not too far off the mark. Top end speed is okay, but we are missing some torque, and this is something we will work to improve. Overall, the experience was good, and it was nice for me to drive and have the same experience that our YXZ1000R customers will have. I can confirm that in this car you can have a lot of fun, you can be competitive, and reliability is excellent. We did not break a single thing this entire rally.”
Co-Driver: Yamaha YXZ1000R prototype #251
“This outing was a real learning experience. Over the past few days Eric and I have been team building, and every day our timing was better. Things like trusting me when I say when to push, when to slow down, dangers ahead and things like that. Today his reaction was straight away. The stage was really fun. A bit dangerous in the morning, as it was very slippery because as you can see the terrain is very dry and dusty, and it was like an ice rink. We made some errors in the morning, but we had a bit of luck too and this also helps save the day and the rally. We are super happy! We made it to the finish, and I think we are in a good position in the end.”