L'Estage wins Rallye Défi and leads the Championship
- Triple victory for Mitsubishi -
Ripon, Quebec, (September 15, 2009) - Antoine L'Estage and co-driver Nathalie Richard from St-Jean-sur-Richelieu won Rallye Défi last weekend, 4th round of the Canadian Rally Championship. The North American champions now take the lead in the season standings with two events remaining. They also tied John Buffum's 4-win record and stretched their lead for the Mitsubishi Cup. The manufacturer also put two other teams in the Top 6: Simon Losier, with François Morin, and Maxime Losier, with Philippe Poirier, drove their Synchro AutoSport Lancer Evolutions to 5th and 6th places, respectively.
Winnipegers Jan and Jody Zedril earned top honours in the 2WD class while Phil Deans and Carmel Burke from Kingston led the Production Sport class. Finally, Martin and Patrick Losier took a deserving 9th overall on their maiden rally and Michelle Laframboise, the only woman driver entered, came home 17th out of the 21 teams that made it to the end of this gruelling event.
Rallye Défi marked the comeback event of Jean-Sebastien and Jacques Besner, who were third with only two stages left when their Evolution RS was sidelined with mechanical trouble. Both Andrew Comrie-Picard, with Brit co-pilot Robbie Durant, in a 2009 Lancer Evolution and Mathieu L'Estage with Yanick Napert, were also at the head of the pack in the early stages but were forced to withdraw.
"It was an extremely difficult and challenging rally," said Koji Soga, President and CEO of Mitsubishi Motor Sales of Canada. "All our drivers were exceptional and I congratulate them for their excellence."
Next round : Pacific Forest Rally
The Mitsubishi teams will have only three weeks to prepare their Lancers and Evolutions before they cross the country to Merritt, British Columbia for the fifth round event, the Pacific Forest Rally, which will be held on October 2nd and 3rd. For more information, please visit the event web site at www.pacificforestrally.com.