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GP Week : Issue 7
n The five day asphalt Targa Tasmania event in Australia was won by Steve Glenney in a Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9, beating the Porsche 911 GT2 of Jim Richards. n The second round of the African regional championship will be run this weekend in Uganda. Championship leader Muna Singh starts number one in his old model Subaru Impreza when the Pearl of Africa Uganda Rally heads off with a super special stage run in the palace grounds of the King of Buganda. Ugandan driver Emmanuel Katto competes in his new Impreza N14 for the first time. n Andreucci’s Group N Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX beat a hoard of S2000s on the asphalt Mille Miglia Rally in Northern Italy, run in mixed conditions. Luca Rossetti (Peugeot 207 S2000) finished second and has now scored maximum points on both rounds of the European championship held this year so far. In mysterious circumstances, Fiat Abarth team drivers Giandomenico Basso and Anton Alen were entered privately, and immediately after the official start, Alen’s car was withdrawn. Basso’s car retired with transmission failure. n Sixty-one-year-old former racing driver Dany Snobeck won the 60th running of the legendary Rallye Lyon Charbonnieres Rhone, opening round of the French asphalt series. He was driving a Peugeot 307 WRC, and inherited the lead when fellow Peugeot driver David Salanon went off the road near the end. SPECIAL StAGES GEORGES Houel, who nine years ago was believed to be the oldest competitor to contest a world championship rally, has died at the age of 94. He was small in stature, but a giant in sport in France, competing in top level athletics and rugby, before branching out into two alternative activities. In motorsport he first attracted attention as a successful motorcycle racer. Later he co-drove with Stirling Moss on the Tour de France automobile in a Mercedes 300SL, and in the culinary arts he became proprietor of a restaurant in Paris called ‘Le Volant’ (the steering wheel). He drove on the final world championship Ivory Coast Rally in 1992, and his final appearance on the world motorsport stage was the Monte Carlo Rallye in 1999, when he was part of a team of miniature Subaru Vivio cars. One of his Monte Carlo team-mates was Gabriele Cadringher, now President of the FIA’s Manufacturers’ Commission, who remembers the event very well. “Georges was paired with Jean Vinatier (in earlier years one of France’s greatest rally drivers), and together their ages totalled 150! I got the impression that the Japanese managers could not believe what he was doing at his age – and in one of their cars! “I really do not know how Jean and Georges managed to work together at all.” But it was at Le Volant where his popularity was at its greatest in motor sport. Cadringher: “There was a non-stop stream of visitors from every part of motor sport coming to his place; watching him do the cooking; looking at the souvenirs around the wall; listening to his stories. We will miss Georges a lot.” Nobody knows for sure whether Georges knew he would become the world’s oldest rallying competitor, or maybe just the oldest Monte Carlo driver. He must have had some inkling, judging by the fact that he waited till 1999 to contest his final event at the age of 85. Vale: Georges Houel 10