Interwetten Racing Teams mark top times at the IRC season's finale in Cyprus
Franz Wittmann/Josefine Beinke lie in very good sixth overall place after four special stages despite penalty time
Brian Bouffier/Xavier Panseri mark second-best time twice even after breaking of transverse control arm
Franz Wittmann and Josefine Beinke (Peugeot 207 S2000) have successfully started off into the last IRC run this year, the "FxPro Cyprus Rally". The Interwetten Racing Team already enthused the thousands of spectators along the super stage yesterday evening with fifth-best overall time. Unfortunately, the front end of the Peugeot 207 S2000 was damaged at a jump.
The service time on Friday morning (only ten minutes) didn't suffice to repair the damage. Therefore the Interwetten Racing Team was awarded a 1:50 minutes penalty. But Wittmann wasn't disheartened and instead gave his answer on the three first special stages of the day. Three times fifth-best SS time had the Lower Austrian move up from 33rd to sixth overall place.
"The penalty time obviously hurts. But we are feeling quite at home despite some small matters. For instance, we had no brakes seven kilometres prior to the end of the fourth special stage. But a lot of drivers are complaining about this. Now it is paramount to keep up the speed and not to make any mistakes. If so, there is still a lot to win at this rally", explained Wittmann.
The second Interwetten driver, Bryan Bouffier, had a bad surprise in store right in the early morning. On the second special stage the right front transverse control arm broke and subsequently the wheel, as well. The Frenchman managed to repair the damage on the stage itself but lost almost 25 minutes and dropped back to last place. But he showed his class on the following special stages and marked second- best overall time twice.