Tough weekend for Molly Taylor at Rally Acropolis
After her short appearance at Rally Estonia, Molly Taylor's second WRC participation was haunted by bad luck: following technical issues, the Australian's stages turned out to be rather short at the wheel of her M-Sport Ford Fiesta Rally3.
"Time to have another bite at the cherry - Rally Acropolis here we come!" - wrote Molly Taylor, Australian rally legend and Extreme E race winner ahead of last weekend's WRC event. "This is an event I’ve always wanted to do, so I’m very excited for it to be part of our Rally3 WRC program. See you soon." After her first WRC appearance in over 10 years with M-Sport Poland’s all-new Ecoboost-powered Fiesta Rally3 car in Estonia, Molly Taylor was back for a second rally - out of her three event program - in Greece, alongside Seb Marshall as co-driver. And, after a short Friday in Estonia, where she ran wide, rolled her car and was forced to retire after stage 4, the plan was now to collect more experience in Greece, onboard of the Fiesta Rally3. "What a welcome we had tonight in Athens." - she said. "Amazing to see crowds again, so much atmosphere and a spectacular backdrop. Can’t wait to take on this challenge!" At the shakedown on Friday, Taylor set a promising time and was just a few seconds behind the only other Fiesta ST Rally3 rally car in the field. But the issues started when she was forced to pull out of Friday's action because of technical troubles. The team worked hard to try to fix her car to rejoin the rally on Saturday. "Tough morning for us with an overheating issue forcing us to stop for the day." - she explained. "The crew are hard at work to get us back out tomorrow." Her crew indeed fixed the car in time, allowing Molly Taylor and Seb Marshall to take the start on Saturday for Stage 7 in Pavliani. But the problems were not over yet, and Taylor's car came to a halt again on Stage 8 with a suspected oil pressure issue. Unfortunately, the rally was over for the Australian. "We’ll live to fight another day." - said Molly. "What started out as a really positive morning unfortunately threw us another curve ball and we’ve had to retire with engine issues. Goes without saying that it’s been a tough and disappointing weekend for us all." "But we will take the positives from the amazing Acropolis stages we had the opportunity to tackle and keep looking forward." Overall winner Kalle Rovanperä was unstoppable in Greece in all weather conditions and also won the Power Stage to celebrate his second win of the season after Estonia some weeks ago. Molly Taylor is set to make her return to the WRC paddock in Finland from 1st to 3rd October, where she will make the last out of the three 2021 outings. The driver, who is currently leading the Extreme E inaugural season, is optimistic for her next Rally Finland - which also represents a return to the place where she wrote history in the past as she stood on the podium in Junior WRC. Taylor was in fact the first woman to achieve such a result.
"Only a few weeks until we get to suit up again. Third time’s a charm, right?"