VW:Mikkelsen/Markkula Not Able To Compete In Germany

 The Volkswagen Motorsport official statement

“Andreas Mikkelsen and Mikko Markkula have had to withdraw from the Rally Germany for health reasons. A diagnosis prior to the start of the Rally Germany revealed that co-driver Mikko Markkula had fractured his seventh vertebra and partially fractured his eighth vertebra, presumably during the Rally Finland three weeks ago. Based on these findings, Volkswagen Motorsport took the decision to withdraw Mikkelsen/Markkula for health and safety reasons. Mikko Markkula had complained of back problems during the Rally Finland, but these had eased off after the rally. However, the pain returned during Monday’s “Recce”. The team decided to send Markkula for an MRI scan, which ultimately confirmed that the Finn would have to withdraw for health reasons.”

Photo:D.Darrall

Photo:D.Darrall

Volkswagen Motorsport Director Jost Capito said:

“Safety comes first, particularly when it comes to Mikko Markkula’s health.  The fractured vertebrae were not easy to diagnose, which is why we took our time to ensure that we made the right decision. It would have been too risky to send Andreas Mikkelsen out with a co-driver, alongside whom he has not driven a single metre prior to the rally and who did not take part in the ‘Recce’. Andreas has changed his style of pace note this season, and Mikko is the only co-driver familiar with them. Unfortunately they must both withdraw from the Rally Germany and are very disappointed. Everyone in the team has their fingers crossed that Mikko will make a speedy recovery.”

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