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GP Week : Issue 20
n Another new colour scheme will be seen on a Stobart team car in Rallye Deutschland. This will be on the Structo sponsored Focus World Rally Car to be driven by Francois Duval. n World Championship Munchi’s driver Federico Villagra won the Rally Region de Junin in Peru at the wheel of a Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX. This event counted for the South America Codasur championship and was based at Peru’s Central Highlands regional city Huancayo, which is 3200 metres above sea level. One week later (last weekend), Federico was leading the Catamarca Rally in his native Argentina when he was overtaken with two stages to run by Marcos Ligato. Eight Mitsubishis featured in the top ten finishers. n 24 hopeful drivers have applied to drive the Kronos team’s celebrity Peugeot 207 S2000 on the forthcoming Barum Rally, the fifth qualifying round of the IRC. One possible candidate is Roman Kresta, who last weekend won the Kopna Rallysprint in his native Czech Republic on his debut in one of these cars. SPECIAL StAGES 48 year old Zimbabwean driver Jamie Whyte heads the FIA’s African Rally Championship and prepares for his country’s own qualifying round, the Zimbabwe Challenge Rally to run on 22-24 August. This will be the penultimate round before the championship finale in fellow Rhodesian country Zambia, and a particularly critical fixture in the series. The five-times national rally champion motorcycle dealer from Harare leads the series after the first three rounds ahead of Japanese driver Hideaki Miyoshi and Zambian Muna Singh. He drives the Subaru Impreza car used by fellow Zimbabwean Conrad Rautenbach when he won the African championship last year. Conrad, who has won his home event for the past three years, will not compete as he is to compete in New Zealand, which demands he is in Auckland only hours after the rally in Zimbabwe. Note: the Zambia Rally was originally scheduled for this weekend, but has been officially rescheduled for 12-14 September. Ford’s Family Affairs in Germany THE recently published entry list for ADAC Rallye Deutschland (15- 17 August) lists no fewer than 25 World Rally Cars, 14 of them (notwithstanding that the world championship Munchi’s team will not be taking part on this event) being Ford Focuses. Just as noticeable is a strong family interconnection. Not only does the list show father and son Peter van Merksteijn, but also father Rene and son Dennis Kuipers, all driving Ford Focus World Rally Cars. Also on the entry list as a Focus driver is Matthew Wilson, but the missing link in the chain of family drivers is father Malcolm, the former driver who is now chief of MSport. Peter van Merksteijn has recently taken delivery of the first privately owned 07 version Focus, the car driven five times by Mikko Hirvonen in which Mikko won the Rally Japan and Wales Rally GB. This is the greatest number of World Rally Cars on a world rally since Rally Ireland last year. High Noon at Harare … Jamie Whyte taken a month ago in Kenya Peter van Merksteijn tests his latest Ford Focus WRC a week ago. 16