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LA EMOCIÓN – VOLKSWAGEN UNDERWAY AT THE RALLY SPAIN IN FRONT OF THOUSANDS OF FANS IN BARCELONA

WRC A FULL 2016

La Emoción – Volkswagen underway at the Rally Spain in front of thousands of fans in Barcelona.

Sébastien Ogier (F), Julien Ingrassia (F) Volkswagen Polo R WRC (2016) WRC Rally Catalunya 2016 Photo: Bodo Kräling

Motorsport flair on Montjuïc: Third place for Ogier/Ingrassia
Thousands of spectators at the site of the 1929 International Exposition

FIA WORLD RALLY CHAMPIONSHIP (WRC)
RALLY SPAIN

Wolfsburg (13 October 2016). Font Mágica, world architecture and motorsport – the 2016 Rally Spain got underway in pouring rain in Barcelona. Sébastien Ogier/Julien Ingrassia (F/F) finished third on Thursday’s only special stage, which took place at the foot of Montjuïc, the hill that stands proudly above the Catalonian metropolis. The three-time world champions made the best of their situation and trail Ott Tänak/Raigi Mõlder (EST/EST, M-Sport-Ford) by just 3.5 seconds going into the first “real” day on Friday, which consists of six gravel stages. Andreas Mikkelsen/Anders Jæger (N/N) ended the opening stage in eighth place in their Polo R WRC. Volkswagen team-mates Jari-Matti Latvala/Miikka Anttila (FIN/FIN) were 15th fastest.

Thousands of fans lined the 3.2-kilometre spectator stage to cheer on the drivers and co-drivers in the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC) – despite some heavy rain at times. For the third time in a row, the route led the cars through the site of the 1929 International Exposition, past Mies van der Rohe’s iconic German Pavilion, the Font Mágica mountain and the Palau Nacional. Montjuïc provided the venue for a Formula One Grand Prix on four occasions in the 1960s and 70s. This special stage has become a permanent fixture at the Rally Spain since 2014.

Quotes after the start of the Rally Spain

Sébastien Ogier, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #1
“That’s not a bad way to start the rally. We knew that these conditions would make it hard to beat the drivers who started in front of us, but all in all we drove a good stage and are happy. The route was extremely slippery, but not too bad to drive on. We are looking forward to tomorrow when the rally really gets going.”

Jari-Matti Latvala, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #2
“I am actually happy with my performance, only the time was much worse than I expected. The very heavy rain made the conditions very challenging. That will also be the case tomorrow, when we tackle the first gravel stages. That is when the rally really begins.”

Andreas Mikkelsen, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #9
“It is always rather special to start a rally with a special stage like that. The many spectators cheering on us drivers and co-drivers always give you a few goosebumps before you really get down to business the following day with the gravel stages. This year there were a few fewer fans than usual along the route, because of the rain – but the atmosphere was still good. We took a rather cautious approach on the opening stage, and are happy with the way it went.”

Sven Smeets, Volkswagen Motorsport Director
“The start on Montjuïc is always particularly atmospheric. Even in the rain, many spectators are determined not to miss the opportunity to watch the world rally cars in action. The stage was far more challenging than usual, due to the rain. Emotionally, however, it is one of the best the World Rally Championship has to offer. After this good start, we are now looking forward to the first gravel stages on Friday. Given the unsettled weather, they could prove to be a real challenge.”

Provisional result after day one of the Rally Spain

01. Ott Tänak/Raigo Mõlder (EST/EST), Ford, 3m 47.6s
02. Lorenzo Bertelli/Simone Scattolin (I/I), Ford, + 2.7s
03. Sébastien Ogier/Julien Ingrassia (F/F), Volkswagen, + 3.5s
04. Jan Kopecký/Pavel Dresler (CZ/CZ), Škoda, + 5.0s
05. Kris Meeke/Paul Nagle (GB/IRL), Citroën, + 5.2s
06. Craig Breen/Scott Martin (IRL/GB), Citroën, + 5.2s
07. Thierry Neuville/Nicolas Gilsoul (B/B), Hyundai, + 5.7s
08. Andreas Mikkelsen/Anders Jæger (N/N), Volkswagen, + 5.8s
09. Mads Østberg/Ola Fløene (N/N), Ford, + 6.1s
10. Hayden Paddon/John Kennard (NZ/NZ), Hyundai, + 6.4s

15. Jari-Matti Latvala/Miikka Anttila (FIN/FIN), Volkswagen, + 12.0s

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

André Dietzel
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Photos: Hélena El Mokni / Daniel Roeseler / Kräling / Red Bull by Volkswagen Motorsport

Categories:   RRM ARGENTINA WRC 17 AÑOS

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