All change in the general standings The first Romanian special stage held many surprises in store for the competitors in this first Central Europe Rally. It has to be said that the especially muddy terrain in the first loop of the special stage...
All change in the general standings
The first Romanian special stage held many surprises in store for the competitors in this first Central Europe Rally. It has to be said that the especially muddy terrain in the first loop of the special stage caused misery for a good number of riders and drivers, to such an extent that the organisers decided to shorten the route for the second loop.
In the bike race, this 2nd day was utterly dominated by Frenchman David Casteu. In winning both the day's specials, the KTM rider took advantage of the problems encountered by Cyril Despres and Jordi Viladoms, who both fell victim to navigational errors, as well as the withdrawal after a fall of Marc Coma, the former leader, who injured his right knee. Casteu now sits comfortably at the top of the general standings, with a lead of 4'32" over Chilean Feliciano Lopez. Cyril Despres is placed 14th, almost 15 minutes off the lead.
Casteu's domination was emulated by countryman Hubert Deltrieu in the quad category, where the Frenchman holds a lead of more than a minute over the stage's local boy, Romanian Razvan Paul Irimescu.
It was all change as well in the car category: Stephane Peterhansel, 4th in the general standings this morning, took control of the rally from Carlos Sainz. Handicapped by having to open proceedings, the Spaniard is still in 2nd position only 22" behind and has a 7" lead over the revelation of this second day, German Dieter Depping. With consistency as his watchword, the VW test driver won the first special in front of the BMW of Qatar's Nasser Al-Attiyah (who himself won the 2nd special) and the Mitsubishi driver.
Finally, in the truck race, Hans Stacey lived up to the domination expected of him. Winner of the day's first special stage, the Dutchman has opened up a veritable chasm at the top of the general standings with a lead of more than 12 minutes over German Franz Echter. It has to be said that the two Tatra drivers, Ales Loprais and Andre De Azevedo both lost more than 30 minutes during the first special due to mechanical problems.
It all bodes well for tomorrow's third stage, when the competitors will get back to grips with this same devilish special stage, but in the opposite direction this time.