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October 19th

RALLY DE ESPAÑA – 24-27/10/2013 – PREVIEW

The penultimate round of the 2013 World Championship, Rally Catalunya serves up an extremely varied menu to the competitors taking part. With the rally including night and day stages, on tarmac and gravel, the Citroën Total Abu Dhabi World Rally Team crews will need to produce something special to challenge for the win. Winners in Germany and runners-up in France, Dani Sordo and Carlos del Barrio will be looking for another big result in front of their home fans.
The season’s only mixed surface event, Rally de España has changed again this year, with a brand new route. On Friday, competitors will leave the square in front of Barcelona Cathedral to contest the first three stages under cover of darkness. The race will continue on tarmac the following day, with the rally’s longest leg. On Saturday evening, a 1hr 15min service period will enable the mechanics to convert the cars to their gravel configuration. This is because the final leg will be held on the mountainous gravel roads around Salou.
The drivers and teams must therefore be versatile and responsive to adapt to the various conditions, especially if the weather turns at some point or other during the weekend! This will be the key to success for whoever is to succeed Sébastien Loeb and Daniel Elena, winners here of the last eight rallies and who have now exited the WRC scene…
Among the leading contenders, Dani Sordo and Carlos del Barrio are undoubtedly close to the top of the list. After winning in Germany, the Spanish crew finished as runners-up at the Rallye de France. “Obviously, I would dearly love to win this rally, more than any other. I made my World Championship debut here, I won my first race in the JWRC and I secured my first podium finish in the Xsara WRC,” recalled the Torrelavega driver. “But it won’t be easy to manage the race. The overall leader at the end of the tarmac stages will be first on the road the next day, sweeping the racing line for everyone else. It’s a shame, because that will undoubtedly lead to strategies being adopted to avoid that situation.”
After finishing on the podium in Germany and Australia, Mikko Hirvonen and Jarmo Lehtinen were off the pace at the last event. Lacking in confidence on the muddy roads of Alsace, the Finnish duo hopes to get back among the front-runners in Catalonia. “The conditions we usually get in Spain are fairly consistent and that should help me to get back to a good performance level,” admitted Mikko. “To some extent, not being first on Saturday evening won’t be a handicap. Sunday is when we’ll need to push hard to try and secure the win!”
Following on from their recent appearance at the Cyprus Rally, in the Middle East Rally Championship, Khalid Al-Qassimi and Scott Martin get back behind the wheel of the DS3 WRC of the Abu Dhabi Citroën Total World Rally Team. “I’m beginning to get to know this rally very well. And sometimes I haven’t done too badly here, like in 2010, when I finished seventh. I hope I can score points here again this season,” confirmed the Emirati.
Abu Dhabi Racing will also be represented by Mohamed Al-Mutawaa and Mohamed Al-Sahlawi, who will be competing in DS3 R3s. Al-Mutawaa also took part in Rallye Deutschland, where he claimed a podium-finish in the Citroën Top Driver standings.
Many observers will be monitoring the progress of Robert Kubica at this rally. Competing in his DS3 RRC, the Pole will be attempting to clinch the WRC2 title.


Winner in Germany, runner-up in France: you’re on a good run at the moment…
”I’ve always been there or thereabouts on tarmac, so there was no reason for that to be any different this year. Having said that, we haven’t had any proper tarmac conditions as yet this season, with ice and snow in Monte-Carlo and quite a lot of rain and mud in Germany and France. I hope the weather will be a bit better in Catalonia. I think I’ll feel confident there and I’ll be on the pace again.”

The word ‘confidence’ comes up again and again. What makes you feel confident – or not – in your DS3 WRC?
“It’s true that I have felt lacking in confidence on gravel this season. I suppose I mean that I can’t tell how much grip there is and so I don’t know how the car is going to react. When the balance of my DS3 WRC is right, when I feel good and when I have good pace notes, I know I can carry a lot of speed into a corner, like you would in track racing. This is essential for me to set good times and be able to fight for the win.”

How would you describe this event?
“This rally will be special in all aspects. We are going to tackle the first stages at night, a situation that we are no longer used to. I’m really disappointed that there is no reclassification at the end of the second leg. What is the point in pushing hard, building up a good lead, if you then find yourself first on the road, sweeping the line for your rivals on the Sunday? The gravel stages are so slippery that the leader won’t be able to prevent his challengers from making up ground on him.”


Round: 12/13
Base and service park: Portaventura – Salou
Surface: Gravel and tarmac
Weather: Mediterranean climate, with average temperatures varying between 10°C and 20°C. Autumn is reasonably mild, but conditions can change quickly.
Sunrise and sunset on the first day of the rally: 8.18am/7.00pm
Local time: GMT+2
Currency: Local currency is the Euro.
Technical information: Spare parts (gearbox, differentials, subframes, steering racks and turbochargers) are not shared with other rallies.
Tyres: 18 Michelin Pilot Sport tyres to be chosen from 18 hard compound and 12 soft compound tyres for the shakedown and the first two legs, and then 10 Michelin Latitude Cross tyres to be chosen from 10 hard compound and 8 soft compound tyres for the third leg.

Reconnaissance: Tuesday 22 and Wednesday 23 October, from 8am to 7pm.
Shakedown: Thursday, 24 October from 1pm on a 2.25 km-long stage at Salou (2.6 km from the service park).
Route: 15 special stages (9 different stages). 355.92km of timed sections. Total distance: 1,033.56km.


1.00pm: Shakedown
7.30pm: FIA Pre-Event Press Conference

12.00pm: Start (Portaventura)
6.00pm: Ceremonial start (Barcelona Cathedral)
8.03pm: SS1 – Querol (21.26km)
8.44pm: SS2 – El Montmell (24.14km)
10.45pm: SS3 – Riudecanyes 1 (16.35km)
11.22pm: Flexi Service A (45 min)

8.15am: Service B (15 min)
9.05am: SS4 – Riudecanyes 2 (16.35km)
10.05am: SS5 – El Priorat 1 (42.04km)
11.46am: SS6 – Colldejou 1 (26.48km)
1.08pm: Service C (30 min)
2.33pm: SS7 – El Priorat 2 (42.04km)
4.14pm: SS8 – Colldejou 2 – Power Stage (26.48km)
5.37pm: SS9 – Salou (2.24km)
5.52pm: Flexi Service D (75 min)

6.00am: Service E (15 min)
7.33am: SS10 – Gandesa 1 (7.00km)
7.58am: SS11 – Pesells 1 (26.59km)
9.04am: SS12 – Terra Alta 1 (35.68km)
11.09am: Service F (30 min)
12.57pm: SS13 – Gandesa 2 (7.00km)
1.22pm: SS14 – Pesells 2 (26.59km)
2.28pm: SS15 – Terra Alta 2 (35.68km)
4.16pm: Service G (10 min)
5.00pm: Podium
6.00pm: FIA Post-Event Press Conference





Marie Pierre-Rossi / Linda Martins
Media Citroën Racing
Photo Exclusive and Copyright:
André Lavadinho
Admin and Translation:
Media Qatar World Rally Team
Rally Report Magazine Argentina

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Rally Report Magazine Argentina 13 años




This post is also available in: English (Inglés) Deutsch (Alemán) Español

WRC A FULL 2013 / 2014


29 de Diciembre 2013

Cuando todo indicaba que la firma inglesa que distribuye y arma en sus instalaciones de Cumbria, los autos que representan a la compañía norteamericana del ovalo en el WRC, o sea Ford desde 1997 con la responsable gestión de Malcom Wilson, en el día de ayer surgió la versión que su empresa habría acordado un contrato de tres años con Vodafone para participar cómo patrocinador principal de la escuadra británica en el campeonato del mundo de rallyes que organiza la FIA a partir del mítico Rally de Montecarlo a mediados de enero.
Pero al parecer no es tan concreta la opción cómo se vislumbraba para la sustitución del patrocinio de Qatar, tras la determinación del príncipe qatarí, Nasser Al-Attiyah, de dejar de lado por un año la actividad rallística y centrarse al certamen ecuménico de Rally Raid con el equipo alemán que conduce Sven Quandt, X-Raid Team. Mirando el objetivo máximo la edición del Dakar Argentina, Bolivia y Chile 2014 con el MINI ALL4 Racing.
Con esta incertidumbre comenzará M-Sport, el año en el Rally Mundial, si o no Vodafone en los laterales de los competitivos Fiesta RS WRC del finlandés Mikko Hirvonen, el inglés Elfyn Evans, en el día de su cumpleaños número 25 y el polaco Robert Kubica, quien entreno en esta jornada en Europa con vistas a su debut en el ERC Janner Rally con la Fiesta versión RRC by M-Sport con el apoyo del lubricante de su país, Lotos.








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Rally Report Magazine Argentina 13 años




This post is also available in: English (Inglés) Deutsch (Alemán) Español


FIA ERC 2014 event preview: 31 Int. Jannerrallye, Oberosterreich


28 December 2013

EVENT PREVIEW: 2014 FIA European Rally Championship, round one of 12
31 Int. Jännerrallye, Oberösterreich, 3-5 January 2014 (Austria)

ERC Ice Masters to chase success on 2014 season-opener in Austria

Some of Europe’s best drivers will prove their worth as Ice Masters when the 2014 FIA European Rally Championship powers into action on the 31 Int. Jännerrallye, Oberösterreich from 3-5 January 2014.

The asphalt showcase, which first ran in 1969 and attracted 100,000 spectators when it hosted the opening round of the 2013 ERC, is based in Freistadt, 40 kilometres north of the city of Linz in Upper Austria. The stages in the spectacular Mühlviertel region use fast, undulating country roads, with ice and snow adding to the challenge facing the crews.

As well as counting as the first event of the 12-round ERC schedule, which will enjoy extensive coverage on Eurosport, the rally is also the opening event of the Austrian and Czech championship seasons. It provides the first opportunity for drivers to chase ERC Ice Master points, an exciting new initiative developed by ERC promoter Eurosport Events.

Close on 50 cars are entered for the international section of the Jännerrallye with Formula One race winner turned rallying superstar Robert Kubica the top seed in his Ford Fiesta RRC. The entry list also includes Austria’s ERC Production Car Cup champion Andreas Aigner, his ERC 2WD title-winning counterpart Zoltán Bessenyey from Hungary, plus the national champions from Austria (Raimund Baumschlager), Czech Republic (Václav Pech) and Poland (Kajetan Kajetanowicz).

The event features 18 stages over a competitive distance of 245.60 kilometres. A Qualifying Stage, held on the morning of Friday 3 January, will be used to decide the starting order among the priority drivers.


ERC aces to make performance step
Several ERC regulars will be taking a step up in performance in Austria. Andreas Aigner, Robert Consani and Hermann Neubauer are among those sampling more advanced machinery than they used in 2013, with Aigner and Consani both competing in Peugeot 207 Super 2000s and Neubauer armed with a Subaru Impreza R4 STI for the first time. Meanwhile, ERC 2WD runner-up Kornél Lukács will switch to a four-wheel-drive Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX having campaigned a Citroën C2R2 in 2013.

R5 cars out in force in the ERC
Three new-generation Ford Fiesta R5s are entered with Czech drivers Roman Odložilík and Pavel Valoušek, plus top Pole Kajetan Kajetanowicz all competing in the M-Sport-built cars. Valoušek scored the first ERC stage win for an R5-specification car last season, while Kajetanowicz bagged the car’s maiden outright victory in the ERC.

Young ERC hopefuls out to impress
Several future stars will be in action including young Latvian promise Vasily Gryazin, emerging Czech talent Jan Černý, rated Hungarian Kornél Lukács, rising Ukrainian Vitaly Pushkar, German hope Raffael Sulzinger and Simone Tempestini, the current Romanian Junior champion. Černý, Lukács, Pushkar and Tempestini will all be in contention for ERC Production Car Cup honours, where rapid Austrian Beppo Harrach is expected to provide their strongest opposition.

Tarabus to start ERC adventure in Austria
Jaromír Tarabus, a frontrunner in the Czech championship for several seasons, will begin his ERC campaign on the Jännerrallye, one of as many as eight rounds that Tarabus is due to tackle in his Kresta Racing-prepared ŠKODA Fabia Super 2000. Compatriot and European championship regular Antonín Tlusťák is also expected to contest several ERC rounds in 2014 in a Fabia.

Danhelová and Stratieva to chase ERC Ladies’ Trophy honours
Martina Danhelová and Ekaterina Stratieva will battle for ERC Ladies’ Trophy honours in Austria. Stratieva finished runner-up to 2013 champion Molly Taylor, while Danhelová made a one-off ERC appearance in her native Czech Republic last term.

What’s new in the ERC in 2014?
New rallies, new categories and new awards are all in store for the ERC in 2014. The Acropolis Rally, the Circuit of Ireland Rally, auto24 Rally Estonia and the Cyprus Rally are all new for the upcoming season, while Sibiu Rally Romania becomes a winter event. The FIA ERC Junior Championship will get underway on Rally Liepāja in late January; the ERC Manufacturers’ Cup begins in 2014, while surface specialists will be rewarded with the creation of the new ERC Asphalt, Gravel and Ice Master accolades.


ERC Production Car Cup champion steps up for home rally

A new year and a new car – how much experience do you have of your Peugeot 207 Super 2000?
“Not so much. I did some kilometres in a Race of Champions-style event on a rallycross track in Austria but for sure we will do a test before the rally because it is very important to prepare for the wet, icy and snowy roads you get on this event so you can get the confidence.”

So it sounds like the weather will be a big factor?
“It means there cannot be one real favourite for the victory because it is so easy to make a mistake and go off the road or to make the wrong tyre choice and lose one minute. The weather is changing all the time and it is not easy to be on the right tyres at the right time.”

Your choice of car gives you the chance to start the 2014 ERC season with an overall victory…
“Although it’s my home event I don’t have so much experience on these roads and there are a lot of good drivers doing this rally, including really strong drivers from Austria and Czech Republic. They know the stages very well and will be very fast.”

Is this a one-off drive or is there a chance that you will do more ERC events in this car?
“We don’t know yet. I am very happy to be at the start in this car and I will look forward to this but we are still waiting on decisions from some sponsors before we can look ahead for the rest of the season.”

How crucial will a strong result be in your efforts to secure more backing?
“Of course a good result is important but I don’t think it will make a big difference. The most important thing is to compete in the European Rally Championship when it comes to your country.”

*History was made on the Jännerrallye in 1981 when a four-wheel-drive car was used in competition for the first time. Driving an Audi Quattro, Franz Wittmann won by a margin of more than 20 minutes.
*Speaking of iconic rally cars, event regular Stig Blomqvist will drive a Quattro course car as part of the 30th anniversary celebrations of his world rally title triumph in 1984.
*The first Jännerrallye took place in 1969 but a lack of finance meant there was no event between 1986 and 2001. The event didn’t run in 2010 due to a permit issue.
*Ernst Haneder is a baker in Jännerrallye host town Freistadt when he’s not competing. A brush with a telegraph pole ended his hopes of a finish last season.
*Apple strudel and Wiener schnitzel are two popular Austrian dishes. In Upper Austria, dumplings are a favourite, while the Linzer Torte is a cake made from ground nuts and raspberry jam.

ŠKODA driver Jan Kopecký claimed what would be the first of six ERC victories during his title-winning season by repeating his Jännerrallye triumph of 12 months previously. In a dramatic finish, Kopecký beat Bryan Bouffier (Peugeot 207 S2000) to victory by half a second after he fought back from a late puncture. Multiple Austrian champion Raimund Baumschlager finished third. Austria’s Beppo Harrach clinched the Colin McRae Flat Out Trophy for his performance to win the ERC Production Car Cup. Hannes Danzinger recovered from a puncture to win ERC 2WD in a Renault Clio.


Starts: 19:30hrs, Friday 3 January, Messehalle, Freistadt
Finishes: 17:28hrs, Sunday 5 January, Messehalle, Freistadt
Headquarters: Messehalle, Stieranger 8, 4240 Freistadt
Service park: Stieranger, 4240 Freistadt
Facts and figures:
Entries received: 49
ERC appearances: Three (since restructuring of ERC in 2004)
Stages: 18
Stage distance: 245.60 kilometres (138.40 kilometres leg one, 107.20 kilometres leg two)
Liaison: 579.26 kilometres
Total: 824.86 kilometres
Surface: Snow and ice-coated asphalt

Media accreditation and media centre:
Wirschaftskammer (WKO building), Linzer Straße 11, 4240 Freistadt
Accreditation times:
07:30hrs-22:00hrs, Friday 3 January
07:30hrs-22:00hrs, Saturday 4 January
Media centre opening times:
07:30hrs-22:00hrs, Friday 3 January
07:30hrs-22:00hrs, Saturday 4 January
07:30hrs-22:00hrs, Sunday 5 January

Free Practice (for FIA/ERC priority drivers): 09:30hrs, Friday 3 January, Freistadt Trölsberg (1.99-kilometre stage approximately three kilometres from the event service park)
Qualifying Stage (for FIA/ERC priority drivers): 10:30hrs, Friday 3 January, Freistadt Trölsberg
Shakedown (for all other drivers): 11:00hrs-15:00hrs, Friday 3 January, Freistadt Trölsberg
Driver photo/interview opportunity: 14:00hrs-15:00hrs, Friday 3 January, Pferdeeisenbahn Museum, Kerschbaum 61, 4261 Rainbach (eight kilometres from service park)
Presentation of competing cars: 16:00hrs, Friday 3 January, Stadtplatz, Freistadt
Start order selection: 16:30hrs, Friday 3 January, Stadtplatz, Freistadt
FIA Action for Road Safety photocall: 16:40hrs approx., Friday 3 January, Stadtplatz, Freistadt
Pre-event press conference: 17:15hrs, Friday 3 January, Wirschaftskammer (WKO building), Linzer Straße 11, 4240 Freistadt (200 metres from the service park)
Ceremonial start: 19:30hrs, Friday 3 January, Messehalle, Stieranger, 4240 Freistadt
Post-event press conference: 18:30hrs, Sunday 5 January, Messehalle, Stieranger, 4240 Freistadt, Austria. Top-three drivers and co-drivers in attendance
Event media contact: Armin Holenia,, +43 6642012700
Television coverage: Daily highlights will be broadcast on Eurosport. Go to the Watch it on TV section of for more information
ERC Rally Radio: Live throughout the event at or through the ERC app
Results, standings, live timing and text commentary:





Media FIA ERC 2014

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Rally Report Magazine Argentina 13 años




This post is also available in: English (Inglés) Deutsch (Alemán) Español

WRC A FULL 2013 / 2014


28 de Diciembre 2013

Vodafone será el patrocinador oficial de M-Sport a partir del Rally blanco de Suecia, valido por el FIA World Rally Championship 2014 en el mes de febrero en los Ford Fiesta RS WRC de Mikko Hirvonen, Elfyn Evans y Robert Kubica.


Media & Comunication TGS Worldwide
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