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  Saturday, 16 November, 2002, 09:55 GMT
Blundell's challenge gone
Mark Blundell and Bob McKenzie in their MG
Blundell wants another go at rallying
Former Grand Prix driver Mark Blundell has failed in his ambition to finish the Rally of Great Britain at his first attempt.

The Englishman had wanted to succeed where so many of his peers, including his friend Martin Brundle, had failed.

But the former Ligier and McLaren driver at least had the consolation that the retirement was not his fault.

The transmission on Blundell's MG ZR broke on the fifth stage, putting the car out of the event.


At one stage we even felt like professionals
Mark Blundell

Blundell's chances had already been dented by an engine problem before he even had a chance to turn a wheel in anger.

Despite the problems, Blundell enjoyed his first taste of world-class rallying - and is eager to come back for more.

Blundell said: "Unfortunately we started the rally with a problem - we only had three cylinders on the engine.

"Then we had a collection of other issues. We punched the drivers' window out on a branch which was quite a hairy experience.

"Then we lost our transmission.

"To retire from the rally is hugely frustrating and hugely disappointing.

"But I have enjoyed every minute of being in the car with (journalist) Bob McKenzie (his co-driver) and at one stage we even felt like professionals.

"I would have loved to have come to the end of the rally and if MG or any other manufacturer gives me a chance next year I would love to do it again."

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