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GP Week : Issue 48
SPECIAL StAGES n Kimi Raikkonen had a bad day at Rally della Marca. His Fiat Grande Punto S2000 lost a wheel on Stage 3 and he had to retire. n Cautiously optimistic news comes after the accident of Rene Kuipers (a new Subaru Impreza WRC S14) at the Sezoens Rally regarding co-driver Bart Hissink who suffered head injuries. They crashed into a tree in heavy dust. Mark van Eldik finished fourth on the event in another new S14, returning to active competition after a serious rally accident last year. n Sardinia winner Jari-Matti Latvala has won his second rally in six days! At the wheel of a Ford Escort, he led the Lahti Historic Rally (29-30 May) from start to finish. This event was the only gravel event to qualify for the FIA's European Historic car series. n Patrick Richard's Subaru Impreza N14 won the Rocky Mountain Rally at Calgary, Alberta over six minutes in front of Andrew Comrie-Picard's Mitsubishi Evo X. The top seed Antoine l'Estage (Evo X) went off the road on the penultimate stage when second. n Changeable weather led to a wide- open Zagreb based Croatia Rally, third round of the FIA's European series. Peugeot 207 Super 2000s took the top five places, with the lead held by Luca Betti, Corrado Fontana, Michal Solowow and Krum Donchev. Donchev snatched the victory on the final stage. Best Pirelli Star Driver candidates were Davide di Benedetto (Peugeot S2000) and Andrea Torlasco (Renault Clio R3). Solowow now heads Donchev in the ERC by five points. n 2007 national champion Patrick Henry won his second successive French championship event at Rally Limousin, driving a Peugeot 307WRC. In Spain, Porsche cars took the top two places on the Rally Rias Baixas, headed by Sergio Vallejo. n Florian Gonon won the Swiss cham- pionship Rallye du Chablais in a Subaru Impreza Group N. Niall Macguire led a Subaru Impreza World Rally Car 1-2 at Circuit of Munster. 1 The turbos which wo Notwithstanding the official decision of the FIA’s World Motor Sport Council in March that the next generation World Rally Car will be based on 2-litre normally-aspirated Super 2000 designs in 2011 and 2012, and that a 1.6 litre turbo engine will be introduced in the new World Rally Cars from 2013, the WMSC is to be asked to reopen the debate at its meeting on 24 June. The latest wish is that 1.6 litre turbo be used from the start of the new Super 2000-based World Rally Car formula in 2011. Sources close to the discussion say that the ISC and World Rally Championship Commission agree with manufacturers that this will be a better direction to take, notwithstanding the politically unsettling effect that such an immediate U-turn would create and the extremely short time frame for such a change of rules. Citroen sources state that the movement to run 1.6 litre turbos is part of a movement to integrate the engines used in top level rallying with those to be used in World Touring Car championship events, as a first step towards imposing the World Engines concept on the whole sport. Olivier Quesnel, “We can understand the argument for using 1.6 turbo engines, but we are completely against the idea of having World Engines imposed in the sport. “The World Engines concept gives the message to potentially interested manufacturers that if they enter the sport, they must compete in every top level discipline, and that will frighten them away.” Sources in the industry state that development of turbocharged engines at the level which would be permitted in rally sport would be much cheaper than development of full 2-litre normally-aspirated engines. The problem is that this debate has arisen at a time when everyone had thought that the specifications of future World Rally Cars, except for specific details about cosmetic changes, had been settled for 2011 and 2012. Other major decisions to be taken on June 24 concern the World Championship calendar for 2010 and finalising the transition system for changing from the current World Championship technical regulation to the next one. to access a HUGE global audience ADVERTISE in GPWEEK