William Creighton hopes to rejoin the JWRC title fight on Saturday

William Creighton’s FIA Junior World Rally Championship title hopes currently hang in the balance after the Moira driver had to retire his car from the opening leg of Acropolis Rally Greece today.

Creighton and his Belfast team-mate Liam Regan started Friday in the lead of the one-make Ford Fiesta Rally3 series having set the fastest time on Thursday night’s super special stage in Athens.

Despite dropping behind Laurent Pellier and Diego Dominguez on this morning’s curtain raising ‘Loutraki’ test, Creighton was generally happy with his pace as 10 seconds covered the top three.

However, disaster followed on the next gravel stage – the 10.26-miles of ‘Pissia’ – when a visibly flustered Creighton pulled up at the time control and reported he had damaged the car’s radiator.

With the traditional lunchtime service halt not forming part of Friday’s itinerary, Creighton and Regan resorted to carrying out makeshift repairs, which included topping up the Fiesta’s radiator.

Although they made it to the remote tyre fitting zone, the problem only got worse and they had to resort to pushing the car into the regroup area. Soon after, the decision was taken to retire the car in the hope it can be fixed so they can rejoin the action on Saturday using the Super Rally rule.

We don’t want to wreck it [the engine] and then have nothing to rally with,” explained Creighton. “We tried to fix it but sadly the issue could not be rectified at the remote tyre zone. Once we get the car back in service, we can assess the situation and see what the next move is,” he added.

Going into the fifth and final round of the Junior World Rally Championship, Creighton held a 29 point lead over Frenchman Pellier, with Paraguayan Dominguez a further three points behind.

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