January 16, 2014
Robby’s team have stated that there is not an engine problem with the car so they will not need to replace it and therefore be forced to withdraw. There was a fuelling problem and now Robby has consulted with the ASO and under the rules he can continue with the rally even though he had to leave the stage after starting. He may incur a time penalty but given he cannot race for a position this is irrelevant. Reaching the finish and getting the chance to shine in the final stages is much more important.
According to the team, the fuel cell on the car has to dry out now but they are anticipating being able to continue in the rally in the next couple of hours.
Earlier they advised the situation as below but happily, it seems that there was a miscommunication about the nature of the problem.
1) Robby Gordon had engine issues around KM17/18 – note: You CAN’T change the engine block during the rally
2) He was headed back to support crew near the start. ( towards Antofagasta )
3) They do not know if he is officially out, but it sure doesn’t look good with an engine problem.