Meeke halted on tragic Condroz Rally
Kris Meeke’s return to competitive rallying ended prematurely when the engine on his Skoda Fabia R5 failed at last weekend’s Condroz Rally.
The Northern Irishman retired from third place after the car, run by Italian team Metior, hit problems on the fifth stage.
The event was won by Meeke’s former Citroen team-mate Stephane Lefebvre. The 26-yearold Belgian moved into the lead on SS2 and kept the C3 R5 out front to give it its highest profile win yet.
Like many, Meeke’s thoughts were elsewhere following an accident involving the Skoda of Steve Matterne and co-driver Rik Vanlessen.
Vanlessen died in the accident, but it remains unclear whether he was killed in the impact or suffered a heart attack. Matterne was hospitalised with non-lifethreatening injuries.
Meeke’s Facebook page read: “We all love motorsport and rallying because of how exciting it is – for the drivers and navigators in the cars, for the team members who work so hard to keep the cars going, and for the fans who watch the action. But it’s dangerous and sometimes it reminds us of that.
“Today, sadly, was one of those occasions. I want to send my condolences to Rik Vanlessen’s family and friends.”