WRC

Rally Norway: OMV Kronos leg two summary

Manfred Stohl best Citroen-driver and non-Scandinavian o OMV Kronos Citroen World Rally Team in places six and nine o Carlsson/Giraudet try to gather as many kilometres as possible o Ford about to celebrate double-victory following ...

Manfred Stohl best Citroen-driver and non-Scandinavian

o OMV Kronos Citroen World Rally Team in places six and nine

o Carlsson/Giraudet try to gather as many kilometres as possible

o Ford about to celebrate double-victory following Loeb-slip

The OMV Kronos Citroen World Rally Team gave a brilliant tactical performance on the second day of the "Rally Norway". Thereby Manfred Stohl and Ilka Minor had to go to the limit almost permanently. Reward: they finished the second leg in sensational sixth place. This means that they are not only the best non-Scandinavians but also the best Citroen-drivers at the rally. Daniel Carlsson and Denis Giraudet are still in search of the right rhythm and hope to find self-confidence by gathering as many race kilometres as possible.

Stohl almost permanently at the limit

Manfred Stohl and Ilka Minor are content. The Austrian OMV duo lies in sixth place following the second leg of the Rally Norway, the third run to the FIA World Rally Championship. Even though, in truth, it was a success of tactics. Nevertheless, a lot of risk had to be taken. Stohl: "Our set-up is much too hard. If you drive normally here, you're nowhere. We had several close calls today. I gladly accept sixth place but it is only partly to my credit. In any case, we were lucky enough to stay on the road." But it will still be a load of work to get this result across the finish line. Gigi Galli (Ita/Citroen Xsara WRC) is only 10,6 seconds behind. Stohl: "As I know Gigi, he will give 110 percent on Sunday. Then I will have to decide whether to take this risk."

Carlsson somewhat at a loss

Daniel Carlsson and Denis Giraudet once again couldn't find their race- rhythm during the second leg. Their ambition was mainly to stay on the road. Thereby valuable SS-kilometres were gathered. Carlsson: "I am quite at a loss. We give our all and still are behind. Yet, I wouldn't know what to change. I am afraid that there is still a lot of work ahead for us before we really get to grips with the Citroen Xsara WRC." The Swedish OMV driver currently lies in ninth overall place, within scoring range for the manufacture ranking.

Ford secures double-lead

Ford works driver Mikko Hirvonen was able to assert his lead on the second day of the Rally Norway. The 26-year-old Finn remained faultless during the 115,79 special stage kilometres and extended his lead over teammate and countryman Marcus Grönholm to 19,3 seconds. Third-placed local hero (Subaru) lies only 9,9 seconds ahead of his brother Henning (Ford). On the lead, however, the two Solbergs are already missing almost four minutes. Citroen works driver Sebastien Loeb threw away all chances for victory on special stage twelve. The Frenchman slipped off the road and lost almost nine minutes. During the next special stage he lost approximately the same amount of time when he got stuck in the snow once again.

Final marathon-stage

97,10 kilometres and four special stages are scheduled for the last day of the Rally Norway. Thereby the 44,28 kilometres long "SS Elverum" will be held as final stage at 12:14 Uhr. The restart on Sunday morning will be at 6:50. The first car will cross the finish ramp in Hamar at 15:00.

-credit: omv kronos

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About this article
Series WRC
Drivers Marcus Gronholm , Sébastien Loeb , Daniel Carlsson , Manfred Stohl , Mikko Hirvonen , Denis Giraudet , Ilka Minor , Gigi Galli
Teams Citroën World Rally Team