The Brazilian is still in the race for the Acropolis Rally
Oliveira took the strength from the Gods to complete a gruelling day in Greece
The hardest challenge of the year for Daniel Oliveira and Carlos Magalhaes turned out to be harder than ever. The BWRT crew members endured their toughest leg so far this year in the second day of competition of the Acropolis Rally of Greece, seventh round of the FIA World Rally Championship, but at the end the team members could smile after the tremendous job they did.
Greek Saturday’s action had all the ingredients this classic is used to display. The stages scattered around at the East of the Gulf of Corinth feature the same or worst conditions than the ones they raced yesterday and, of course, it was another torrid day in the Mediterranean with temperatures nearing the 30ºC.
However, what made this day something as epic as the twelve labours of Hercules was the fact that Oliveira had to drive the first section without the power steering on his MINI John Cooper Works WRC.
The system started to fail early on SS7 and Daniel had to struggle all his way through that stage and the next remaining two before returning to the Service Area. It was a titanic job for Oliveira who showed all his determination after driving in such terrible conditions for more than 50 kilometres.
In the second loop Oliveira could enjoy a trouble-free run but the tiredness and the rotten roads started to take over his muscles. Daniel kept a steady pace and was able to return to the next service with his car in one piece before tackling the last obstacle: a 17.71-kilometre night test in the Nea Politia stage which put an end to this exhausting day.
Daniel’s word. “All in all it was a really difficult day. We started this leg with some technical issues which delayed us a bit in the standings; however, once these problems were solved we were back on the road without any trouble although the stages were much rotten after the first pass. On the night stage we were a little bit scared at the beginning but luckily nothing happened. We remained focused on our aim which is to finish the rest of the rally and keep on gaining experience”.
It’s not over yet. The last day of the competition of this extremely demanding challenge it’s the shortest one; however, nobody should take things for granted since it will be as tough as the previous days. There are still five stages to run and 65.58 kilometres to cover before reaching the finish line.
Strategy surprised Loeb. In the fight for the lead of the race the French team mates Sebastien Loeb and Sebastien Ogier, both with Citroen, took advantage of a better road position to shorten the gap of a 50-seconds advantage that Petter Solberg (Citroen) had at the beginning of the day. Loeb will be first tomorrow on the road since Ogier slowed down his pace in the last kilometres of the last stage so as to avoid sweeping the road.
-source: brazil wrt