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A strong start to ERC for Chris Ingram in Peugeot's 208 R2 rally car

A strong start to ERC for Chris Ingram in Peugeot's 208 R2 rally car

Rising star Chris Ingram got off to a strong points-scoring start in Latvia, finishing sixth in the FIA European Rally Championship (ERC) Junior category, driving a Peugeot 208 'R2' rally car.

The 20-year old from Manchester was competing against 15 other ERC Junior drivers, many of whom are from the local Baltic states and Scandinavia and have more experience in driving with studded tyres on icy forest gravel roads.

Ingram set the third fastest stage-time twice in his Union Flag liveried Peugeot 208  only beaten by those slippery winter stages by a Latvian and a Swedish driver. The conditions for this year's Rally Liepja were the most challenging yet, with thawing ice and slippery wet snow on day one and heavy blizzards of snow and freezing fog on day two.

Despite skidding off the road once into a field and losing 90 seconds as spectators helped the Peugeot 208 R2 back onto the road, Ingram completed all 11 stages to achieve his aim of a good points-scoring finish.

Ingram said: "Finishing sixth is not quite the result we wanted but these have been some of the most difficult stages I have ever done in my life and it's been an incredible experience. I wanted to start the ERC Junior season off with a good points-scoring finish and against strong local and Scandinavian competition who have more experience of rallying on snow, that's exactly what we've done.

"Rally Liepja has been an incredible experience, the Peugeot 208 'R2' is absolutely brilliant to drive and I'm learning all the time in it. I'd like to thank Peugeot UK for giving me this incredible opportunity to compete in the ERC Junior Championship. It's been a good start, and I'm looking forward to our next event, in better conditions - on Tarmac."

Ireland's Craig Breen, driving a Peugeot Rally Academy 208 T16, won Rally Liepja outright.

by: Sophie Williamson-Stothert