PORSCHE CAYENNE S TRANSSYBERIA RALLY TEAMS HOLD TOP EIGHT POSITIONS AFTER OPENING STAGES IN RUSSIA; PORSCHE TEAM CANADA IS OUT AND TEAM USA MOVES UP ATLANTA: After leaving Red Square in Moscow in a driving rainstorm on Friday, the 34 rally ...
PORSCHE CAYENNE S TRANSSYBERIA RALLY TEAMS HOLD TOP EIGHT POSITIONS AFTER OPENING STAGES IN RUSSIA; PORSCHE TEAM CANADA IS OUT AND TEAM USA MOVES UP
ATLANTA: After leaving Red Square in Moscow in a driving rainstorm on Friday, the 34 rally vehicles competing the 2008 TransSyberia Rally powered by Sony Ericsson have completed four days of action, and the teams from North America competing in Porsche Cayenne S Transsyberia racers have had varying degrees of luck.
The teams are now off for a day (Tuesday) in preparation for the start of stage five, which runs on Wednesday. The American team, with driver Ryan Millen and co-driver Colin Godby, finished tenth overall in the second stage and moved up from 17th place to 13th place after two stages (scoring is yet to be posted for stages three and four).
Millen, a veteran of Baja off-road races, a phone call to his famous dad, defending TransSyberian champion Rod Millen, helped him set his strategy for the rest of the event. "On stage three, the Kazan to Yekaterinburg run, which covered nearly 630 miles on very rough terrain, we didn't make up much time, but a call to dad convinced us that we should play the Russian part of the TransSyberia conservatively. He felt that while we can't make up big chunks of time in Russia, they certainly can lose a lot of it. And it's his feeling that a lot of our fellow competitors are turning in some good times, but are abusing their vehicles to do it. So by conserving the car in Russia, he feels that Colin and I will be in good shape when they hit Mongolia," said Millen.
The day before, on stage two from Vladimir to Kazan, Millen lost the power steering on his Cayenne, and had to strong-arm through the stage. The Canadian Porsche Cayenne S Transsyberia team of former Sebring 12-hour winner Kees Nierop and co-driver Laurance Yap was not as well positioned, as they lost their transmission were forced to retire from the event. They were able to finish stage two and limp through stage three, but were forced to retire when the logistics of getting a new transmission in time did not come together.
Today's fourth of a total of 14 legs ran over 306 miles from Yekaterinburg to Tyumen on 14th July, but the 12-mile special stage within this leg was cancelled due to extreme conditions where the organizer could not guarantee the safety of the competitors. The Transsyberia Rally started on 11th July on Moscow's Red Square and finishes on 25th July in the Mongolian capital of Ulaan-baatar after a total of over 4340 miles.
In the overall rally, Armin Schwarz and Andi Schulz of Porsche Cayenne Team Germany 1 achieved the top time at leg two of the 2008 Transsyberia Rally powered by Sony Ericsson. In their 385 hp Porsche Cayenne S Transsyberia they mastered the 36-mile special stage five seconds faster than Cayenne pilots Denis Levyatov and Sergey Talantsev from Team Porsche Russia 1. Finishing third with a gap of 51 seconds were Paul Soler and Laia Peinado from Team Spain, also at the wheel of a Cayenne S Transsyberia.
In the overall classification Pedro Gameiro and Pedro Figueiredo of Team Portugal still hold the lead despite finishing today's leg in 14th. Christian Lavieille and Francois Borsotto of Porsche Team France move into second place, 5.45 minutes shy of the leaders. On the second leg, the pair drove the fifth fastest time.