Hyundai star faces major setback – is Ott Tänak’s severe crash to blame?

Thierry Neuville will not be able to drive in Lithuania this coming weekend.
Thierry Neuville
Thierry Neuville. Photo: Austral/Hyundai Motorsport GmbH
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Neuville, who leads the WRC, mentioned during Rally Poland at the end of June that he wanted to participate in a test race like his teammates Ott Tänak and Esapekka Lappi.

Hyundai eventually responded to the Belgian star’s call, as the team also registered him for the national rally in Lithuania. The participation of Finnish driver Lappi in the rally had already been confirmed earlier.

In the test rally, Neuville could have properly prepared for next week’s Rally Latvia.

However, Neuville’s plans have now changed. Hyundai told the DirtFish website that Neuville would not be able to drive in the Lithuanian rally. Lappi, on the other hand, will start the rally as originally planned.

Among Hyundai’s stars, Ott Tänak had the opportunity to test the Rally1 car last weekend during the Rally Estonia. Tänak’s race, however, ended abruptly when the Estonian rolled his car severely.

It is uncertain whether Neuville’s withdrawal from the Lietuva Rally is a result of Tänak’s accident. However, it is likely, as teams have only a limited number of test cars.

The Lietuva Rally will take place on Friday and Saturday near the Latvian border. Lappi and co-driver Janne Ferm will return to Hyundai’s Rally1 car after more than a three-month break, as they last competed in the Safari Rally at the end of March.

Rally Latvia is scheduled for 18-21 July.

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