Round Seven: the battle continues. Rallye le Touquet, 4th, 5th, 6th October, 2002 With six competitors still in with a chance of winning the 2002 Peugeot 206 Super Cup, the French holiday resort of Le Touquet Paris-Plage will host the seventh ...
Round Seven: the battle continues.
Rallye le Touquet, 4th, 5th, 6th October, 2002
With six competitors still in with a chance of winning the 2002 Peugeot 206 Super Cup, the French holiday resort of Le Touquet Paris-Plage will host the seventh round of the fastest UK one make rally series this weekend.
The event is also a qualifying round of the French 206 Championship and although it will be tempting to do battle with the asphalt experts from mainland Europe, the UK series competitors will be concentrating on their own fierce fight for a place in the 206 Super 1600 works car in 2003.
Six competitors could still win the Championship with two rounds to go. Although former series leader Mike Faulkner and the Dunbabin twins have decided that enough is enough, three of the four remaining competitors can keep their hopes alive by scoring maximum points. Whilst Shaun Gallagher leads the series by nine points from Garry Jennings, dropped scores mean that Jennings has the advantage. Along with Gallagher, Marko Ramanen and Chris Moore, 3rd and 6th respectively in the Championship, will be going flat out in their efforts to gain the top spot.
The Irish contingent is swelled by 7th placed Gareth MacHale from Dublin and Mike Bird who currently leads the Rookie's category by an impressive margin.
Leader for a short time in Ulster, David Wright has two sixth places from his first two outings this year. With plenty of previous 1600 experience the Lancastrian is one to watch, promising some stunning stage times.
The Championship top ten is rounded off by Midlander Richard Sykes. He started the season well with a fifth, preferring the asphalt and should go well on the fourteen technically difficult stages.
Newly crowned Canadian National Rally Champion Patrick Richard, however, has plenty of gravel experience and led both Scottish and Quinton rallies, but lacks experience on the black stuff. He goes to Le Touquet having missed Ulster so does not expect to be on the pace but winning his championship in Canada last weekend should give him confidence.
The truly International 206 Super Cup has George Philippedes from Greece tenth on the road for the start of the rally, trying to break a run of bad luck. Having retired from decent positions too often this season, George has a new co-driver for the event and hopes a solid run will net him valuable points.
Rounding off the smaller than normal 206 Super Cup entry are regular contender Trevor Martin and the ever cheerful Matt Jessup. Matt's entry was in doubt until the last minute, as the car remained unprepared after rolling heavily whilst competing on an event to upgrade his licence for Ulster.