Ever since Sebastien Loeb took part in the Junior Championship, it has become a well known fact that the Acropolis rally is a real nightmare for the small front wheel dive cars. The terrain is rough for the World rally cars but is even harder on...
Ever since Sebastien Loeb took part in the Junior Championship, it has become a well known fact that the Acropolis rally is a real nightmare for the small front wheel dive cars. The terrain is rough for the World rally cars but is even harder on the Super 1600s which start behind the powerful four wheel drive vehicles. The target on this event remains to get past the obstacles with as little damage as possible. Making it to the finish represents a real achievement and those who succeed are almost sure to score points.
Kris Meeke, Chris Patterson and their C2 Super 1600 of the Kronos Racing team got to the finish. Claiming sixth position, Kris scored three valuable points and cannot be unhappy : "I don't forget that after we broke the rear left suspension arm on Friday, we were almost last in the rankings. This morning I was lying in tenth ! These three points allow us to maintain a good position compared to the new Championship leader who has participated in one more event than us so far. I'm also satisfied that we experienced no other problem than the one previously described. We've found a performing set-up and we set three fastest times. Now the rough events are behind us and another part of the Championship begins. I'm confident for the rest of the season. "
Conrad Rautenbach, eighth tonight, also scores points. "For the first time, I didn't go through the Superally to reach the finish. The young Zimbabwean chose to drive at a cautious pace throughout the event. But he was slowed down by a broken damper and anti roll bar on Saturday then by a throttle problem today and also two punctures (SS17 and 18). To prepare the Rally of Finland, Conrad has chosen to take part in the Tampere Rally.
Daniel Sordo and Oriol Julià were forced to retire in the final group of stages. Victims of the same problem as their team-mates on Friday, they set two fastest times on Saturday. Back in the points, they were slowed down after breaking the alternator mounting, which they managed to fix themselves to the price of a time penalty. They restarted their attack but had to stop definitively one kilometre after the start of stage 18.
"We are disappointed", admitted Engineer Alexis Avril. "Especially for Dani who is the only one not to finish. We have experienced some problems here that we never did before or in testing, such as the big stones stuck in the rails. Maybe our test stages were too 'smooth' to prepare for such a fight on such severe terrain. We will naturally meticulously analyse the parts which have caused our problems and we will immediately work to prepare the rally of Finland."