Tag Archives: WRC Events and News

Nine MUST-SEE videos from the WRC’s Round Nine

The WRC ADAC Rallye Deutschland was a thriller from start to finish. The ‘home’ team won, but it was not Volkswagen Motorsport. Rather, Hyundai Motorsport’s Thierry Neuville shone brightest after 18 stages and some 360km of rallying over three days. These videos all show action from different stages over the weekend. We hope you enjoy them as much as we did in compiling them here!

Max Attack!!

Slippery and sideways…

Here’s Jari-Matti Latvala on the limit!

Our final video here brings high speed action from the famous Panzerplatte stages!

Esapekka Lappi sets the tone in Whangerei Shakedown

Rain and slippery conditions during today’s shakedown session for the weekend’s International Rally of Whangarei didn’t slow Finland’s Esapekka Lappi and co-driver Janne Ferm, the pair set fastest time in their MRF Tyres Skoda Fabia S2000.

The chance for teams contesting this weekend’s two-day event over roads in the Whangarei and Kaipara districts to check their car’s setup was held over the 1.25km super special stage at Whangarei’s William Fraser Memorial Park on Pohe Island.

Completing the course in a fastest time of 1min02.9sec, Lappi’s team-mate Gaurav Gill in the second MRF Tyres Skoda was second fastest with a time of 1min03.5sec while young Kiwi competitor Sloan Cox was third fastest with a time of 1min04.3sec. Lappi, completed five runs while many others, including Hayden Paddon, opted to do one quick check.

The opening round for the 2013 FIA Asia Pacific Rally Championship and second round of the Brian Green Property Group New Zealand Rally Championship, today’s conditions are expected to be an extreme according to the weekend’s forecast. Today’s heavy rain is predicted to reduce to showery spells for the remainder of the weekend, leaving much of the region’s 16 special stages in prime condition for the weekend’s action.

From 3:30pm this afternoon drivers will be in Whangarei’s Cameron Street Mall for an autograph session before the cultural welcome and ceremonial start that begins from 4:30pm. All the competing crews and cars take part before being parked for the night ahead of Saturday’s action. Leaving Whangarei from 8am the route takes competitors over roads around Parahi in the south-west, Waipu Caves and Brooks – including the ‘Hella’ jump on Swamp Rd. They return to Whangarei for the brand new 1.25km Pohe Island ‘Super Special’ stage before a 20minute service break at the Town Basin. The route is repeated in the afternoon with the cars then parked overnight following the service break.

Sunday begins at 6:55am and heads south through Waipu Gorge and on to Marohemo and Batley road, visiting Paparoa and Cassidy road before returning to Whangarei for a 20 minute service break. The teams repeat the stages in the early afternoon, returning to the Quayside Town Basin for a ceremonial finish from 3:15pm.

Spectators can watch for free at the start, finish and Quayside Town Basin service areas with access to rural viewing points, including the Pohe Island ‘Super Special’ stage costing just $10 per adult. Children under the age of 15 are free with a paying adult and rural paddock parking is available for a gold coin donation. A share of all spectator ticket revenue goes to the local community groups that help run the spectator viewing areas.

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Vodafone Rally de Portugal stage guides – Saturday

Petter Solberg/Phil Mills - Picture by Eva Kovkova for HANDBRAKES & HAIRPINS.

The second day of Vodafone Rally de Portugal takes competitors back to a trio of gravel stages in the Serra do Caldeirão hills, north of Faro.

After leaving the Service Park from 0810hrs, crews will tackle a loop of three speed tests before returning to Faro for a 30-minute service. In the afternoon crews will tackle the same loop before they return to the town for the final overnight halt at 1700hrs after 135km of competition.

Here are the wrc.com stage notes for Saturday’s stages. Under the summaries you’ll find our list of website links to help you follow the rally via our live results service. Continue reading Vodafone Rally de Portugal stage guides – Saturday

WRC Vodafone Rallye de Portugal: DAY ONE Itinerary

After a thrilling SSS last night to open the Vodafone Rallye de Portugal, here is the Day One itinerary. For LIVE stage times and news flashes, please click to www.wrc.com.

SS1: Estadio Algarve 1 – 2,03km – COMPLETED.

Service Park

SS2: Santa Clara 1 – 22,72km – 09h30 – COMPLETED.
SS3: Ourique 1 – 20,21km – 10h18 – COMPLETED.
SS4: Silves 1 – 21,36km – 11h16 – COMPLETED.

Service Park

SS5: Santa Clara 2 – 22,72km – 14h10
SS6: Ourique 2 – 20,21km – 14h58
SS7: Silves 2 – 21,36km – 15h56

Service Park

Parc Ferme

Ogier fastest in Rally Portugal Shakedown

Picture by Eva Kovkova for HANDBRAKES & HAIRPINS.

One of the stars of this year’s Rally New Zealand, Sebastien Ogier, was the fastest driver at the pre-event shakedown for Vodafone Rally de Portugal earlier today, with former World Rally Champion Petter Solberg his closest rival.

The four hour test – a prelude to this weekend’s rally – took place on a 5.03km gravel road at Vale de Judeu, 12km from the main Service Park near Faro. The same piece of road was used for Shakedown in 2009. Weather conditions were dry and sunny throughout, with a temperature peaking at 23 degrees Celsius.

“I know Shakedown isn’t important to the real rally but it’s good for the confidence to be fastest and we have a lot of confidence now,” said Ogier. “I found the car very good, like usual, and although we tried a couple of different set-ups we’ve ended up sticking with our usual one – there’s nothing new. The road was slippery and cleaning a lot; more than the proper stages I think. I was 16 seconds faster though on my fourth pass compared to my first – that’s more than three seconds per kilometre – so you can see the effect.”

Picture by Eva Kovkova for HANDBRAKES & HAIRPINS.

Fellow Citroen C4 WRC driver Petter Solberg was closest to Ogier’s time, stopping the clock 1.3sec later, while Citroen team leader Sebastien Loeb was third. “It’s a challenging stage; maybe the most difficult of the rally!” said Loeb, “The surface is loose and abrasive, just like the actual stages, but the road is very fast and narrow. We tried out a few suspension adjustments but nothing major. Everything was fine.”

Vodafone Rally de Portugal gets underway this evening with the head-to-head Super Special stage in the Algarve Stadium. Crews will tackle the all-asphalt track in reverse-seeded order from 19h25hrs.

Picture by Eva Kovkova for HANDBRAKES & HAIRPINS.

Here are the Shakedown times of the leading WRC drivers:
01) OGIER (Citroen C4 WRC) – 3:05.0
02) P. SOLBERG (Citroen C4 WRC) – 3:06.3
03) LOEB (Citroen C4 WRC) – 3:07.3
04) SORDO (Citroen C4 WRC) 3:07.9
05) HIRVONEN (Ford Focus RS WRC 09) – 3:08.0
06) LATVALA (Ford Focus RS WRC 09) – 3:08.4
07) H. SOLBERG (Ford Focus RS WRC 08) – 3:09.2
08) RAIKKONEN (Citroen C4 WRC) – 3:10.0
09) VILLAGRA (Ford Focus RS WRC 08) – 3:11.1
10) WILSON (Ford Focus RS WRC 08) – 3:12.1
11) Al QASSIMI (Ford Focus RS WRC 09) – 3:12.2
12) BLOCK (Ford Focus RS WRC 08) – 3:15.7

Picture by Eva Kovkova for HANDBRAKES & HAIRPINS.

WRC Vodafone Rallye de Portugal: EVENT PREVIEW – PLUS Shakedown Stage Pictures!

Picture by Eva Kovkova for HANDBRAKES & HAIRPINS.

Story: Evan Rothman
Pictures: Eva Kovkova
WRC Vodafone Rallye de Portugal: 27 – 31 May 2010

Portugal welcomes the World Rally Championship (WRC) crews with open arms this weekend for Round Six of the 2010 WRC calendar, the Vodafone Rallye de Portugal. Hundreds of thousands of rally fans are expected to line the rally’s stages this weekend, drawing in what promises to be another nail biting and dramatic rally. Continue reading WRC Vodafone Rallye de Portugal: EVENT PREVIEW – PLUS Shakedown Stage Pictures!

Gassner Jnr hopes for success in Portugal in P-WRC category

Red Bull-backed driver Hermann Gassner Jr is determined to score a top five finish in the Group N category on his return to the World Rally Championship in Portugal this weekend. In order to give himself every chance of doing well, he has driven his own reconnaissance car from his home in Germany to the rally base in Faro.

The 21-year-old completed the 2,800-kilometre trip because he felt it would boost his chances of a strong result on the demanding gravel event, which marks his return to the WRC for the first time since Rally Sweden in February at the wheel of his Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX. Continue reading Gassner Jnr hopes for success in Portugal in P-WRC category