Gus Greensmith has labeled his early 2021 Monte Carlo Rally form the “worst performance of my career” with “99% of it” down to his driving.
Greensmith is competing on his third Monte Carlo Rally, his second in a top-spec Ford Fiesta WRC, and is currently 11th overall after five stages.
The 24-year-old’s previous Monte form is mixed, with a superb WRC2 Pro victory and seventh overall on his first visit in 2019 but an embarrassing accident ruining his event 12 months ago.
Greensmith, who is driving the sole-surviving M-Sport Fiesta WRC after his team-mate Teemu Suninen’s weekend ending crash on Thursday, is 21 seconds behind fellow youngster Pierre-Louis Loubet and 17.6s shy of Takamoto Katsuta, but all three trail Andreas Mikkelsen and Adrien Fourmaux’s Rally2 cars overall.
“I wish I had the answer to why it’s gone so wrong but I don’t so I’ll do my best to get it right,” Greensmith said in the media zone after the Friday morning loop.
“I just don’t enjoy a single thing right now. You can’t learn in a ditch so that’s probably the only positive.”
When asked what he thought the factors were in his slump in confidence, Greensmith responded: “I’d say it’s probably so far the worst performance of my entire career so I think it must be quite a few factors but I’d say 99% of it is just the driver.
“It’s just me, I’ve got to fix it.”
Conditions on Friday have been challenging, with ice on the rally’s third stage and then loose gravel on the fifth creating a testing mix.
But Greensmith said he did not see this as an excuse.
“I’ve won here before [in WRC2 Pro],” he added.
“Usually when I see conditions like that I think, ‘Great, I can make some time up’ but at the moment when I get to them, just zero confidence.
“When you’re behind WRC2 cars you shouldn’t really be in one of those [Rally1] cars so I don’t know, I’ll just try and get better.”