* Luck but no brakes for Manfred Stohl * OMV Kronos Citroen WRT drops back to eleventh place * Race to catch up remained unrewarded For now the OMV Kronos Citroen World Rally Team has to be content with eleventh place at the "Rallye ...
* Luck but no brakes for Manfred Stohl
* OMV Kronos Citroen WRT drops back to eleventh place
* Race to catch up remained unrewarded
For now the OMV Kronos Citroen World Rally Team has to be content with eleventh place at the "Rallye Automobile Monte Carlo", the first run to the FIA World Rally Championship 2007. After Manfred Stohl and Ilka Minor had moved up from seventh to fifth place in the morning, the brakes went on strike during the sixth special stage. Thus the OMV duo lost valuable time. Which also means that the race to catch up will start anew on Saturday.
Easy come, easy go
As good as Friday had begun in the morning as troublsome was the sequel in the afternoon. During the sixth special stage, which is 46 kilometres long, to boot, the front brakes of the Citroen Xsara WRC broke down. At about halftime of the stage Stohl spun and the right front of the car got hit. This caused a part of the fender to get loose and cover the ventilation of the brakes until they malfunctioned. "I was really lucky to reach the finish of the leg at all. It still is a bother that we are now so far behind since we had been able to keep up with our opponents up to 20 kilometres into this long SS. Now it will be extremely difficult to catch up the time lost. But we are still competing which means that everything is possible ", explains the OMV driver. Nevertheless, Stohl also had to compete with only three brakes on the last two special stages of the day and thereby lost over two minutes on his immediate opponents for fourth overall place. The 34-year-old Austrian, who lies in eleventh place after leg two, is currently missing 53 seconds on scoring ranks. Stohl: "It is paramount that we can repair the damage at the service. For then we would be able to continue our get-to-know program with the Citroen as planned."
Loeb parries attack by teammate
Sebastien Loeb (F/Citroen C4 WRC) put his young teammate Dani Sordo (E) back into his place in the afternoon. After the Spaniard had caught up almost 20 seconds in the morning the World Champion got his own back in the afternoon by reaching a superlative best time on the 46 kilometres long SS from St. Pierreville to Antraigues. Thus Loeb leads after leg two by 25,2 seconds. Vice-World Champion Marcus Gronholm (Fin/Ford Focus WRC) secured third place but is already 1:15,7 minutes behind leader Loeb.
Two 64,63 kilometre long turns
The third leg of the Rallye Automobile Monte Carlo will commence on Saturday (20.01.) at 06.00 in Valence. Six special stages are scheduled - two identical turns with a length of 64,36 kilometres each. Following the 14th special stage (start of 1st car at 15.10) the teams will depart even on Saturday evening for Monte Carlo, a distance of 360 kilometres. There the final super stage will take place on Sunday (21.01.) at 09.00. It will partly be completed on the legendary Formula-I track.