Fabio Andolfi’s grand finale brings him success at the 69th Rallye Sanremo
Once again, the Ligurian event confirms to be a rally race capable of strong emotions, with upsets to the ranking just in the final part of the race. In this edition, the casino ball stops on the box number 7 of Fabio Andolfi-Manuel Fenoli, Škoda Fabia, very fast in the first stages of the race, even uncontrollable in the final part.
SANREMO (IM), 9 April – The grand finale of the race by Fabio Andolfi and Manuel Fenoli
brings the Ligurian driver, ambassador of PrimoCanale Motori, on the highest step of the pódium of the race. For Andolfi, this is the fourth victory in his career, the first in a rally race of the Campionato Italiano Assoluto, and it has come after a first leg at a good pace, finished in fourth place overall, just 14’’6 from the leader Crugnola. He changed pace in the second day, winning the Teglia opening stage, and remained on the podium in the following Langan and Semoigo, which brought him to second place in the overall standings. But it was the last two stages that determined the success of the driver from Savona. After the transfer of the Teglia stage due to a sudden hailstorm, Andolfi took over on the Langan (the longest rally stage), with 20’’3 over Crugnola, and passed to lead the race, repeating and crystallizing the result in the next Semoigo, finished in second place overall, which led him to close with his arms to the sky on the stage of Sanremo in Corso Imperatrice in front of the Casino.
The victory eludes once again Andrea Crugnola and Pietro Elia Ometto (Citroën C3), among the predicted winners on the eve of the race, who, though succeeding in six of the ten regular stages, failed to win the victory that seemed in their hands after the best time in the Power Stage and their supremacy on the first day of competition with a good margin of advantage. The 20’’3 lost on the rainy Langan, second last special stage, made him drop to the second place in the overall standings.
A great performance winning the closing Semoigo wasn’t enough and in the end 9/10 separated him from the victory, which for him would be the first at Sanremo.
Third place for Damiano De Tommaso-Giorgia Ascalone, despite a strong touch on a small Wall on the morning Semoigo that ended the first lap. Determined and consistently among the fastest in each stage, the Varese driver even managed to set the best time on the first Langan today, before crashing. The mechanics made a miracle fixing the Škoda Fabia in the mid-day assistance and allowing him to finish at 44’’6 from Andolfi, even if in the second passage of the special stages Andolfi-Fenoli were more concerned about bringing the Škoda Fabia on the podium than trying a difficult assault on the overall standings.
Fourth place for Stefano Albertini-Danilo Fappani who, after a not easy first leg, found the right balance in Saturday’s stage, also managing to set the second fastest time on the Semoigo 1.
They were followed by Giacomo Scattolon-Giovanni Bernacchini, fifth with their Škoda Fabia Evo, in a set-up crisis in the first day and definitely more aggressive in the second leg. Sixth place for Simone Miele and Eleonora Mori, at their debut in the Campionato Italiano Assoluto Rally-Sparco, who had set themselves the goal of containing their gap in less than 2’’ per kilometre, goal fully achieved, especially in the second half of the race, in which they peremptorily climbed the ranking.
Then “Pedro”, winner of three editions of the historic race, with Fulvio Florean at the pace of his Volkswagen Polo, who precedes on the finish line Lucchesi “Jr” with his mother Titti Ghilardi on a Škoda Fabia, then Antonio Rusce-Giulia Paganoni and the first of the Due Ruote MotriciGianandrea Pisani.
Giandomenico Basso and Lorenzo Granai (second after the first day and winners of the Vignai special stage and for one special stage leader of the race) had a puncture in the right rear wheel after a touch in the first stage on Saturday and were forced to raise the white flag. Craig Breen manages to finish the Teglia special stage, the first one of the second day, with John Rowan dictating the pace
on his Ford Fiesta Rally2 Evo, but the car has engine problems and the Gass Racing driver prefers not to continue. It was a pity for the Irish driver, winner of the last two editions of the race, after a not satisfactory first day due to turbo issues in particular to the pop-off valve, but anyway, up to that moment, fifth overall at only 17’’ from the top.
RALLYE SANREMO, OVERALL RANKING:
1. Andolfi-Fenoli (Skoda Fabia) in 1:19’02.0; 2.
Crugnola-Ometto (Citroen C3) at 0.9; 3. De Tommaso-Ascalone (Skoda Fabia) at 45.5; 4. Albertini-Fappani (Skoda Fabia Evo) at 1’13.0; 5. Scattolon-Bernacchini (Skoda Fabia Evo) at 1’37.7; 6.
Miele-Mori (Skoda Fabia Evo) at 4’07.5; 7. ‘Pedro’-Florean (Volkswagen Polo) at 5’01.1; 8.
‘Lucchesi Jr’-Ghilardi (Skoda Fabia) at 5’17.3; 9. Rusce-Paganoni (Hyundai I20N) at 5’56.0; 10.
Pisani-Vecoli (Peugeot 208 Rally 4) at 7’00.9