Ferreyros April 26-28, 2002 Saturday 27 April 2002 News after Special Stage 10 The Total Team Peugeot crew of Harri Rovanpera/Risto Pietilainen continue to lead Corona Rally Mexico after leg two's opening three stages. The Finnish crew have...
Ferreyros April 26-28, 2002
Saturday 27 April 2002
News after Special Stage 10
The Total Team Peugeot crew of Harri Rovanpera/Risto Pietilainen continue to lead Corona Rally Mexico after leg two's opening three stages. The Finnish crew have pulled out a 15 minute 24 second advantage over Costa Rican Andres Montalto, and Mexican Group N contender, Carlos Izquierdo (Mitsubishi), now holds third position.
Just 21 of the original 37 competitors took the re-start in Leon at 08:00 hrs this morning, underlining the challenge posed by the altitude, heat and demanding Mexican stages. The second day of competition takes the contenders to the north and northeast for seven special stages totalling 140.24 competitive kilometres. The leg, covering a total distance of 340.24 kilometres, starts with two loops of three stages, and finishes with the longest stage in the event, the 44.66 kilometre run from Mesa to Duarte.
Harri Rovanpera set a blistering pace on stage 8, a fast wide section with an average speed of 94.89 k/ph as it climbed all the way to Agua Zarca. The Finn has continued without problems throughout the opening stages and arrived back at the lunchtime service in Leon relaxed and enjoying the day. "The first stage was good and fast, but the second one was a bit like a stage in Cyprus; lots of tight and slow corners, loose and dusty," he said. "No problems for us though."
Adding to Harri's comments, co-driver Risto Pietilainen said: "All the controls are working well and I think everyone has learned more and more each time. For sure this operation is acceptable for the World Championship. I am really loving the event, it has good organisation, great stages and unusual scenery."
Costa Rican National Champion Andres Montalto holds a comfortable second position, first of the Group N competitors in his Subaru Impreza WRX. He was however pleased to return to service after on-going suspension problems in this group of three stages.
"The car was jumping around a lot and the team had a bit of work to do at service to sort it out," said Montalto. "The first stage was very fast and difficult, but we are okay I think."
Mexican honours are being upheld by Carlos Izquierdo and female co-driver Angelica Fuentes, the pair holding a fine third position after 10 of the 22 scheduled stages. With over 10 minutes in hand to fourth-placed Roberto Sanchez (VW Golf GTi), the pair are taking no risks in their Mexican-spec Lancer Evolution V.
At the end of 10 stages, a total of 21 crews have retired and the remaining 16 contenders now head back for a repeat of the same three stages before contesting the longest stage of the rally.
Corona Rally México 2002
The Corona Rally México is an event organized by the Club Automovilístico Francés de México, and the 2002 event will be its XVI edition. The event will be held on April 26, 27 and 28 in Leon, Guanajuato, México. This is a candidate evento for the World Rally Championship and is sanctioned and observed by the FIA.