Hyundai Motorsport has accepted the blame for a communication error resulting to an error on the number of tires used that eventually denied Dani Sordo of his podium finish at the Mexico Rally.
Sordo completed Monday ‘s final stage in third place, but was later penalized when it was discovered that he had used 29 tires during the event instead of the 28 permitted in the regulations.
On Tuesday night, stewards imposed a two-minute penalty on Sordo and he lost third position to Mads Østberg of M-Sport World Rally Team. Just 1.5 seconds split the pair in the revised classification.
The team did not challenge the decision, which cost it a run of three consecutive podiums this year.
“Due to an obvious communication error, three new tires and two used ones – instead of three used and two new – were fitted at the Tire Fitting Zone after SS20 on Sunday [Monday in Manila] morning. This means one tire in excess was used compared to the number allowed by the regulations,” Hyundai Team Manager Alain Penasse said.
“We will now go back to Alzenau and investigate the issue further. For sure, this doesn’t take away the performance of both the crew and the team throughout this challenging rally,” he added.