WRC A FULL 2017
RAIN MAKES A SURPRISE APPEARANCE IN MEXICO.
Rally Guanajuato México (7-12 March 2017) – Shakedown
Rally Mexico began in the rain on Wednesday afternoon at a decidedly damp shakedown! Stéphane Lefebvre and Kris Meeke were able to put their Citroën C3 WRCs through their paces before the rally gets underway tomorrow evening in Mexico City’s iconic Zócalo square.
As soon as recce were completed, the crews’ thoughts began to turn to the shakedown, which provided the final opportunity to carry out tests before the start of the rally proper. The 5.31km-long Llano Grande stage proved to be narrower than the vast majority of the speed tests in Mexico.
Between the two tyre options available, Stéphane Lefebvre and Kris Meeke both decided to go with soft-compound Michelin LTX Force tyres. This choice turned out to be particularly wise when rain began falling after the first two passes.
Improving his times on each attempt, Kris Meeke recorded his best performance on his fourth run. He completed the stage in 3:48.0 to set the day’s third fastest time. “It was difficult to feel confident on this very twisty, technical road. Despite the rain, we kept working on improving the set-up and we moved in the right direction.”
Stéphane Lefebvre returned to service after his first two passes. After making some changes to the set-up of his Citroën C3 WRC, the Frenchman completed another two runs. His best time of 3:50.6 left him ninth on the leaderboard. “I felt that I drove well on my fourth attempt, but I’m a bit disappointed with the time. When the conditions are changing like today, it is always difficult to know whether any improvement in performance comes from the car, the driving or the level of grip on the road.”
A long day awaits the crews tomorrow. At the crack of dawn they will be setting off for Mexico City, where the rally is due to get underway. Rally México will begin at 6.05pm local time (GMT-6) with two runs on the “CDMX Street Stage presented by Michelin”, held on the famous Zócalo square.
1 Neuville 3:45.8
2 Ogier 3:47.5
3 MEEKE 3:48.0
4 Latvala 3:48.3
5 Paddon 3:48.6
6 Sordo 3:48.7
7 Evans 3:48.9
8 LEFEBVRE 3:50.6
9 Hänninen 3:50.7
10 Bertelli 4:00.7
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