Canberra's Lewis Bates feared his National Capital Rally campaign was over in a matter of minutes when his Toyota Yaris AP4 went off track in stage one.
Early in Cottage 5 Ways, Lewis and co-driver Anthony McLoughlin came into a corner too fast, ran wide and crashed into some trees to damage the front-left of the car.
It looked as though Saturday's leg of the ARC Cup was finished for the pair, but the Toyota Gazoo team managed to fix the car at Woden Service Park in time for stage five.
"We hit a stump underneath the car that was embedded in the ground and it damaged the steering arm, the lower-control arm, the push rod and smashed the disc caliper," Bates said.
"There was a bit of work involved for the guys but they managed to do a super quick job to fix it and get us back out there.
"The car feels really good, all things considered. It's a shame because we're out of results for the weekend, but we're still going out there, having some fun and putting in for some good stage times."
Although Bates and McLoughlin returned to the rally at Hyles Block, they lost 40 minutes for failing to complete four stages - putting them out of contention results wise.
White Wolf Racing's Tom Clarke suffered his third crash in four years at the National Capital Rally in the opening stage, but was unable to return to the Tidbinbilla Forest afterwards.
Bates produced the second fastest times in stages five, seven, and 10, finishing only three seconds behind his brother Harry Bates and co-driver and John McCarthy in the former.
Harry, the reigning ARC champion, finished the first leg with a clean-sweep and looks set to defend his home crown on Sunday.
MORE CANBERRA SPORT
Subaru's Molly Taylor and Dale Moscatt sit second, while Clayton Hoy and Erin Kelly narrowly hold third place in their Mitsubishi Evo IX.
"We've been fortunate to build ourselves a decent lead and I definitely want to protect that, so I won't be taking huge risks tomorrow," Harry said.
"The morning stages were a struggled and I wasn't 100 per cent happy with my personal performance, although our times were still good so that's okay.
"We've been tweaking the car a little throughout the day and trying to improve it. We settled into it this afternoon and I was very happy with how we dealt with the wet conditions when that big storm hit. Overall, it's been a successful day."