Kick Energy rally driver Steve Perez took a creditable third place on the Lewis and Hunter Contracting Cambrian Rally on Saturday, despite only using the event as a shakedown for next week's Rally GB.
Along with Welsh co-driver Paul Spooner, the pair were out in the ex-Marcus Gronholm 2007 Ford Focus WRC, and even though the main purpose of competing on the Llandudno-based event was a test in preparation for Britain's World Championship round, Perez was lying in third position after the first stage.
On stage two, the Chesterfield ace took a stage win, stopping the clocks three seconds ahead of his rivals despite being on unfamiliar control tyres.
All was going well until the final stage of the day when Perez slid wide on a bend clipping a rock at the side of the road.
The impact broke the wheel rim and caused minor damage to the rear suspension, however, the pair were able to make it to the end of the stage without dropping too much time and claim the final step on the podium.
"I'm really pleased with how it has gone this weekend, it was good to compare times with the likes of [Mikko] Hirvonen and [Mads] Ostberg even though we had not done the recce and we were on control tyres,” Perez reflected.
“I am really pleased with a podium finish as I was being cautious today and didn't want to damage the car, all in all it's been a great shakedown and I'm really looking forward to Rally GB next week."
For the record, the event was won by Mads Ostberg in his Subaru Impreza WRC with Hugh Hunter second. Nasser Al-Attiyah, Michael O'Brien and Alex Allingham rounded out the top five.