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GP Week : Issue 128
WRC SNIPPETS n Mads again – what an incredible season he has enjoyed so far. Out of his first eight WRC events this year, five times he has finished in the top six places and the other three times he has been thwarted – twice with a broken gearbox casing (a design fault which has now been corrected) and once it seems by a broken sub-frame which caused an apparent steering failure. He is easily the best of the Fords after the two official Abu Dhabi drivers. His first rally in a Fiesta (the old S2000 version) was Deutschland Rally last year. n Vauhdin Maailma magazine once again carried out their performance calculations of the Finnish event and unearthed surprising facts about the Mitsubishis Lancer Evo Xs on the NORF. Fastest car this year, as recorded on the Laukaa stage, was the Mitsubishi Lancer R4 of Juha Salo – at 196kph – but well short of the all time record top speed achieved by Sebastian Lindholm’s 211kph in a Peugeot 307 World Rally Car. This was the first notable achievement for a R4car in the WRC. The other major Finnish ‘Olympic gold medal’, the unofficial long jump award, went to the Peruvian PCWRC driver Nicholas Fuchs who jumped a distance of 53 metres in the Leustu stage. n Better noted at the time was that the non-championship Latvian Evo X driver Andis Nieksans was the best placed of the ‘N4’ cars including all the PCWRC competitors, using old BF Goodrich instead of current official Michelin or DMack tyres. n Eleven years after the French motorsport federation kick-started the then 26 year-old Sebastien Loeb on his remarkable WRC career by entering him in a World Rally Car on the 2000 Tour de Corse, another potential champion is in course of grooming. 26 year old Pierre Campana is being entered by the FFSA on the forthcoming Rally Deutschland in one of six Mini John Cooper Works WRC cars on this event, and also on the WRC Rallye de France six weeks later. This will be Campana’s first appearance in a World Rally Car, and also his debut on a world rally outside the Tour de Corse. Third place in the all-asphalt Madeira Rally strengthened Luca Rossetti’s lead in the 2011 FIA European Championship. The hopes of the private Fiat driver of fighting for the overall lead were dashed on Stage 5 by a puncture, allowing the Madeiran driver Vitor Sa to rise to second place behind Bruno Magalhaes. Fellow I talian Luca Betti struggled with power steering troubles and finished sixth overall, second ERC qualifying driver. Fourth and fifth were taken by the local Nunes brothers. Miguel suffered an early 90-second penalty for a fireproof underclothing offence, but his chase to catch up was helped when Antonio suffered intercooler pipe problem. ERC challenger Fiesta S2000 driver Maciej Oleksowicz retired with alternator belt failure. The event was originally scheduled to count for the IRC series but finally the international element centred on the European championship contenders. ROSSETTI’S THE MAN IN THE MADEIRA RALLY