Karamjit Singh and Allen Oh's Rally of Argentina ended almost as soon as it had begun Thursday night after the Team Proton PERT Malaysia drivers retired from the event following an accident on SS2.

The action started with two super special stages at the Pro-Racing motorsport complex just outside of Villa Carlos Paz, where two cars raced head to head around a specially constructed gravel track.

Boosted by the arrival of their new Gp N Malaysian Airlines/GO K.L/Malaysian Tourism sponsored Proton PERT - a newly built car by Derby-based Mellors Elliot Motorsport (MEM) - Singh and Oh made a good start to the event by beating their first competitor Niall McShea on their first run round the super special track [SS1].

On their second run however they were dealt a cruel blow when their Proton PERT clipped a rut in the track causing the car to flip on its roof landing badly on the front left corner and forcing them into early retirement.

Under the new Super Rally rule - imposed on the Acropolis Rally last month - drivers who retire can restart the rally on the next leg (excluding them from the points) but the damage to the Proton PERT was too extensive for the team to repair it within the time scale allowed to re-start Leg 1.

"The new car felt really good," said Singh. "We were pushing hard and going well. We beat Niall McShea on our first super special run, but on our second run round the rear wheel caught a rut and it flipped the car over. We landed hard on the front left corner which unfortunately caused too much damage for the car to be repaired in time for the re-start Friday morning.

"It's really disappointing to retire from an event where we knew we could go well especially with the arrival of our new car but these things happen. We'll now have to concentrate on developing the car for Germany and hope that we have some better luck there."

Team Proton PERT's next event will be Rallye Deutschland which takes place on August 19-22.