Gus Greensmith has spectacularly crashed out of sixth place on Rally New Zealand, causing the stage to be canceled.
Greensmith had been looking forward to round 11 of this year’s World Rally Championship, calling it a bucket list event for him.
And it started off fantastically as Greensmith took his first ever gravel stage win in the WRC on the famous Whaanga Coast stage.
Lying just one second behind Thierry Neuville who had a technical problem – which has now been confirmed as no third gear – before SS10 Komokoriki, Greensmith had fifth place in his sights but it all went wrong on Saturday morning’s final test.
Nibbling the inside of a fast left-hand corner, Greensmith understeered off line and ran into a stage-side ditch.
That immediately pitched his Ford Puma Rally1 into a series of rolls that looked incredibly dramatic, but both Greensmith and co-driver Jonas Andersson are OK.
It compounds another miserable rally for M-Sport as team-mate Craig Breen slid off the road and down a bank on Friday, retiring due to a damaged clutch.
It only sent two works Pumas to New Zealand with Adrien Fourmaux sitting out his second WRC event in succession.
With the stage being red flagged, it means Kalle Rovanperä now leads the rally by 4.6s seconds over Ott Tänak, with Sébastien Ogier another 1.9s back.
Elfyn Evans is fourth, 30.4s down on the lead, after hitting a bank and spinning on the previous stage.
Evans had made the start of SS10 albeit with a damaged GR Yaris, so will be relieved by the stage cancelation and it prevented him losing further time.