Gill and Brkic secure first JWRC podium for 2024

Monday 22 April, 2024
Photos: Taylor Gill / Matt Campbell and Team Penske
Taylor Gill and Daniel Brkic enjoyed a strong outing in the latest round of the Junior World Rally Championship (WRC) season, securing a second place in the weekend’s Croatia Rally.
Having finished eighth in the season opener earlier this year, Gill and Brkic found much more rhythm in Zagreb, producing multiple stage wins and several top five finishes over the 20 stages.
Despite a slow start to the rally on Friday, it didn’t take long for Gill to find his groove as he ended up picking up consecutive wins on stages five and six – eventually ending the day with a trio of top-three finishes on top of his two stage wins.
Starting Saturday’s action in third place behind fellow FIA Rally Star participant Romet Jurgenson and Belgian Tom Rensonnet, Gill was elevated to second place after Rensonnet suffered mechanical issues on the day’s third stage – forcing him to sit out of the remaining stages.
Another stage win and a pair of runner-up finishes saw Gill end the day comfortably in second place with a buffer of more than a minute, but just over two minutes off Jurgenson.

The New South Welshman managed to reduce the gap to the Estonian by 10 seconds in the day’s opening stage before a run of challenging results saw him eventually finish two and half minutes off the winner.
Although he missed out on the win to Jurgenson, Gill and Brkic enjoyed a big gap over the other FIA Rally Star participants, with Peruvian Jose Caparo almost 10 minutes off in sixth and South African Max Smart a further three minutes off in seventh.
Gill’s podium sees him move up to third on the overall standings ahead of the Championship’s third round of the season, Rally Italia Sardegna, on 30 May – 2 June.
Another Aussie to secure a podium over the weekend was Queenslander Matt Campbell, who helped guide the Porsche Penske Motorsport #6 Porsche 963 to third place in the FIA World Endurance Championship’s 6 Hours of Imola.

Screenshot 2024-04-22 at 11.09.18
Driving alongside regular teammates Michael Christensen of Denmark and France's Frédéric Makowiecki, Campbell played a big role in helping the team secure a second consecutive podium, despite starting the race from the front row.
In what was a good day for Porsche Penske Motorsport, the team’s second Porsche 963 had a more successful outing, with Kévin Estre, André Lotterer and Laurens Vanthoor steering the car to the outright victory. 
Further down the outright order, Yasser Shahin had a forgettable weekend as he and his EMA Motorsport teammates Richard Lietz and Morris Schuring finished the race 16th in the LMGT3 class after contact on the first lap forced them to make extended pit stops, leaving them out of contention.
The FIA World Endurance Championship continues next month, with the 6 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps on 11 May.

In the United States, the NTT IndyCar Series also held its second round over the weekend, with Will Power ending the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach in sixth place.
Power started the race from the front row and even led the race for 15 laps, but eventually fell back due to a decent strategy from other drivers.
Three-time Supercars champion Scott McLaughlin looked on track to bank some solid points within the top 10 but had to retire due to a mechanical issue with 15 laps to go.
Indycar will have back-to-back rounds with the Children's of Alabama Indy Grand Prix at Barber Motorsports Park in Alabama this weekend.
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