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This is why you should stop your engine if you land in a gravel pit

  2 x Clio 172
Just a quick one to help you save your engine.
One of my customers ended up in the gravel on a track session and his car started to run like crap. He carried on despite the spluttering and poor performance.
By time he got home the car barely ran.

Here's what I found
(Stone had got into the timing belt cover and danced with the sprockets)

Timing was out on both cams by roughly 20degrees .

If you hit the gravel and stall best to wait for recovery.

Fortunately new belt kits and retimed no serious damage done.
  406 V6, Race Buggy
For our offroad stuff you either make an ally cover that's clamped together and completely sealed, or you leave them wide open with just a couple of stone shields so that anything that gets in goes straight back out - anything in between is big trouble.