Peugeot driver Harri Rovanpera has finished third on the Acropolis Rally, round six of the World Rally Championship. The Finn enjoyed a fast and reliable run throughout the three days of the Greek event, scoring valuable points for himself and ...
Peugeot driver Harri Rovanpera has finished third on the Acropolis Rally, round six of the World Rally Championship. The Finn enjoyed a fast and reliable run throughout the three days of the Greek event, scoring valuable points for himself and Peugeot.
Today's action consisted of six hot and rough stages, with a service halt in Lamia at midday. Harri started the day with the firm intention of consolidating his podium position, and he was determined not to take any unnecessary risks over the tricky terrain. His 307 WRC was entirely reliable throughout the day, requiring only routine maintenance at service. He lost time on the opening leg after hitting a couple of rocks and knocking the steering out of line, and he also suffered a bad cut in his tyre tread yesterday. Apart from that, Harri's rally was free of drama.
Harri said: "I'm pleased with this result, although I've not been entirely confident with the car throughout the three days of the event. I didn't have a good feeling with the suspension over the bumps yesterday, and this morning was a little bit the same. The most important thing though is that the car is both reliable and fast, and we clearly have the pace to run at the front. I think we're in very good shape for the next rally in Turkey now, which I was leading last year, and I'm hoping for an even better result than the one here in Greece..."
Harri's team mate Marcus Gronholm took the rally lead on the opening leg, but he was unfortunately forced to retire yesterday after damaging his suspension against a rock. Under the trial of the new super rally system, Marcus was able to drive through today's stages without being eligible to score points. However, he completed some useful testing work in preparation for the Rally of Turkey.
Young Swede Daniel Carlsson, backed by Peugeot Sport, clinched a fine fifth place in his 206 WRC run by Bozian Racing, with the similar car of Manfred Stohl finishing in a points-scoring sixth.
Peugeot Sport team principal Corrado Provera commented: "Harri and Risto have driven one of their best rallies since they started with Peugeot. They have finished third after an excellent battle and brought us six points. The car had no problems either with performance or reliability. It's a pity that Marcus was not able to finish, but from Turkey onwards we will be trying to score bigger points on each rally! "
The World Rally Championship resumes in three weeks time with the Rally of Turkey, based in Kemer from June 25-27. Conditions will be similar to those of Greece, with rough roads and hot temperatures, so the Peugeot team is aiming to capitalise on the lessons learned so far.