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Monte Carlo

Brose Motorsport: No luck at the Monte Carlo Historique Rally

Monte Carlo, 02-05-2019

The Brose Motorsport team’s participation in this year’s Monte Carlo Rally was overshadowed by technical problems and adversities. All in all, more repairs were even needed at this event than are otherwise required for all the vehicles used in a complete season.

Shortly before departing from Bad Homburg, the car suffered problems with a faulty manifold and seal. In addition, the connector of an extra light did not work and had to be replaced hastily. The high beam, including the extra lights, failed during the night on the more than 1,000 kilometer journey to France. In addition, the service crew had to carry out extensive repair work to replace the entire steering column unit.

Complicated electrical repairs: The service crew at work

The first trial on the Saturday was a big challenge for the team on account of the extremely slippery conditions due to packed snow and poor visibility. An incorrect signal by his co-pilot meant Stoschek took a wrong turning, resulting in a large time penalty. To compound things, the service bus veered off the road and landed in a ditch. Fortunately, the mechanics remained unscathed.

The team initially chose the wrong tires for the first trial on the Sunday and again had to contend with packed snow and extremely slippery conditions. When it then put on the right tires, the organizers canceled the Sunday afternoon’s remaining three trials. Such severe ice conditions and poor visibility meant that the narrow, winding mountain roads were impassable for the participants.

Severe snow and ice on the dangerous mountain roads in the Alps.

The heavy snow also impaired visibility on the Monday. On top of that, the car’s windshield wiper motor failed on a trial. Guido Brasch had to remove and replace it quickly. “Our mechanics are in action all day and do a superb job,” said Michael Stoschek in praise of the service crew’s tireless efforts.

Yet the adversities continued: The heat generated by the strong bulbs caused cables to burn through, with the result that the low beam failed. To cap it all, the steel-plate exhaust manifold ruptured and began to disintegrate due to the enormous heat.

This morning, the bitter decision was taken to withdraw from the race. The fuel lines run below the hot exhaust manifold and, as Michael Stoschek explains: “We didn’t want to risk the car catching fire. Moreover, the repairs yesterday took so long that we weren’t able to reach the control point within the set time and so may have been disqualified from the competition.”

The team examines the damaged exhaust system. Continuing the race is impossible.

“The Monte Carlo Historique Rally isn’t our event,” was how a disappointed Michael Stoschek sportingly summed things up. When the 2006 European FIA Historic Rally champion took part in 2015 and 2016, technical problems prevented him from fulfilling his expectations.

“Our Marlboro Stratos was the darling of the crowds, therefore our spectators would have liked to see us on the last stage. We’d like to thank everybody who kept their fingers crossed for us at home and along the course. Most of all we’d like to thank our excellent service crew that was able to fix all the technical problems despite the damaged exhaust system.” said Michael Stoschek and Hanns Werner Wirth.

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