Franz Wittmann/Bernhard Ettel lie in sensational ninth place after the first day

The Interwetten Racing Duo fulfilled expectations with bravura and reaches fantastic times on the long special stages

Franz Wittmann (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX) has not only survived the first day of the "Rally Principe Asturias" but also established a great basis for Saturday with ninth intermediate place. This in spite of the fact that it is anything but easy to cut a good figure versus the S2000 cars since this rally is tailor-made for the much more powerful hightech-vehicles. The Interwetten Racing Duo Wittmann/Ettl has nevertheless given a very good performance already on the first day of this season's ninth IRC-run. Best proof for this was special stage nine where Franz Wittmann reached eighth- best overall time.

"We are here to learn the stages. It is an investment into the future. This rally is extremely hard to read, especially regarding the grip. The demands on the tyres are incredible here. After not even 50 kilometres they are completely overheated and impossible to drive", explains Franz Wittmann.

But before approaching the remaining six special stages with an overall length of 90 kilometres on Saturday, both gearbox and differential had been changed at the final service of the first day.

Due to the onrush of spectators, special stage eight had to be cancelled for safety reasons.

-credit: ir