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GP Week : Issue 130
IN the Academy category the Spanish islander Yeray Lemes was heading for victory until he overshoot a corner on the second day and let Craig Breen into the lead. This was a two-driver battle from start to finish. Lemes continued to chase the Irishman, who held on to the lead, but Breen eventually won by a quarter minute. It was the first time the Academy drivers had rallied on asphalt, which disadvantaged the series leader Egon Kaur, but the conditions provided a surprisingly equivalence of performance between drivers. Kaur continues to lead the Academy series, ahead of Breen and Reeves. RALLYE Deutschland qualified for both the Super 2000 championship and the WRC Academy. The Skoda drivers were strong favourites for the SWRC but things did not go so well. Martin Prokop was initially fastest in his Ford but then went off the road, letting Juho Hanninen ahead of Ott Tanak, but on the final stage of Day 1 Hanninen and his Skoda teammate Hermann Gassner both cut the same corner and the underplate of their cars touched the ground. This slid the cars into the wall on the outside of the bend, wrecking the rear suspension of both. This was the same place where Sousa had done the same thing earlier in the day. Tanak inherited a healthy lead ahead of Karl Kruuda, who then punctured and Tanak gained an even healthier lead in front of Nasser Al Attiyah. Local Guest driver Felix Herbold had power steering failure which caused the car to go off the road into a tree. On the second day Gassner had two punctures and had to stop as he only had one spare wheel. Kruuda lost a wheel. Prokop was fastest in the category on all the Day 2 stages. All nine SWRC cars lined up for the final day with Frigyes Turas enjoying his unusually elevated third place, having survived power steering trouble on Day 2. Sousa lost a quarter hour off the road at the end of the event. Tanak eventually won by over five minutes from Al Attiyah and Turan, who were also the only three SWRC competitors to complete the route, and gained a 1-2-3 result by the Fiestas, the first time this had been achieved this season. The non-championship S2000 Skodas of Weijs and Riedemann, which finished between Tanak and Al Attiyah, pushed hard but never actually won any of the stages. Juho Hanninen retained his lead in the SWRC while Tanak’s win sees him rise to second ahead of Prokop. The SWRC title is now down to five drivers – these three, Sousa and Gassner – as despite Turan’s third place, and his best result so far, he joined the role of those unable to score enough points. Super 2000 win to Tanak Breen’s Academy