WRC Catalunya (Spain) Oct5-7 talk/results
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This is a discussion on WRC Catalunya (Spain) Oct5-7 talk/results within the Motorsports Talk forums, part of the Community - Meet other Enthusiasts category; http://www.wrc.com/page/RalliesDetai...0111~4,00.html There has been significant change for Spain's round of the World Rally Championship in recent years. First the move ...

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    Cool WRC Catalunya (Spain) Oct5-7 talk/results

    http://www.wrc.com/page/RalliesDetai...0111~4,00.html
    There has been significant change for Spain's round of the World Rally Championship in recent years. First the move from the Costa Brava to the Costa Daurada on the other side of Barcelona in 2005, and now the move back to autumn in 2007. The event's nature hasn't changed much, however, with the wide, sweeping asphalt roads providing the fastest sealed-surface stages of the season.

    The event is based in the Port Aventura theme park, in the town of Salou in the Tarragona region, and it's a great place to host a rally. The locals - weened on years of success for double champion and 26-times rally winner Carlos Sainz - really love their rallying, and show every ounce of their passion on the stages as they cheer, holler and wave their flags. With up-and-coming youngster Dani Sordo having won the Junior WRC crown in 2005 and now the number two driver for Citroen Total World Rally Team, they have a new star to pour their accolades on.

    As we've said, the stages are among the fastest asphalt tests in the WRC, and racing technique can pay dividends here as drivers aim for smooth lines through the fast turns to maximise their speed. Corner-cutting is also a widely-used skill here, but this can drag gravel onto the road for the following cars and the second run through the stages, meaning that instant reactions are as important as well-researched pace notes for the particularly hazardous zones.
    ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    from www.rally-live.com

    The Subaru World Rally Team has entered three Impreza WRC2007s for the thirteenth round of the 2007 World Rally Championship. The pairing of Petter Solberg and Phil Mills will drive car number seven, Chris Atkinson/Stephane Prevot will drive car number eight, while Xevi Pons/Xavier Amigo will be in car number 14.

    The team has been testing twice since Rally New Zealand, spending two sessions of three days fine-tuning setup in Spain. Last week all three drivers had a day each on asphalt, and this week Petter and Chris have been gravel testing. Congratulations to Xevi Pons who got married to Sandra on Friday 21st September.

    Richard Taylor, SWRT Managing Director
    “Last week's asphalt test in Spain was encouraging and allowed us to continue to fine-tune the car and build on the improved pace we saw on the last tarmac event in Germany. With a very smooth surface the conditions in Spain suit us well, and we hope to take advantage of recent developments to finish with Petter, Chris and Xevi in points-scoring positions. Being Xevi's home rally, he has a substantial fan-following in Catalunya and will be pushing for his best result in a Subaru in front of his home crowd.”

    Paul Howarth, SWRT Operations Director
    “During the Spain asphalt test we managed to do a lot of running with each driver to work on the sealed surface setup that was competitive in Germany. Spain is a slightly lower grip rally than Germany, but as setup is generally the same we are expecting good pace. Weather conditions and choice of BFGoodrich tyres will be tricky to get right but crucial to performance.”

    Petter Solberg
    “The asphalt test last week in Spain was generally positive for us and gave us the chance to continue development of our asphalt performance. We have made some more progress with the handling of the car, and are eliminating problem areas. I hope that we can take another step forward in Spain. As a team we know the pace is there on asphalt, so I am hoping for a good result next weekend.”

    Chris Atkinson
    “I'm looking forward to getting back to asphalt again. The test went well, and we have had the chance to do a lot of fine-tuning. We were quick in Germany, and after the test I feel more comfortable still with the car. We're going well on asphalt, and I hope we will continue this pace in Spain. Being a very smooth surface, you can lean on the car more through the corners, so high-speed confidence and stability is important. I'm looking forward to it and think we can continue improving the speed of the car with more stage wins.”

    Xevi Pons
    “It's a very exciting time for both myself and Xavier as it is our first Rally Spain with the Subaru World Rally Team, and I am hoping for a great showing in front of the fans. I am sure their enthusiasm and excitement will help us with a strong result. I know the fans are looking forward to the rally, and to thank them for their support I want to do well at home.”

    Source SWRT

    other sources of news/info
    http://www.rallyracc.com/2007/ingles/index.asp <---Rally Catalunya website
    www.swrt.com
    http://www.crash.net/home~cid~4.htm
    www.wrc.com
    http://www.rallytorrents.com/ <----usually the event shows up a week later
    Last edited by Weasel 555; 10-01-2007 at 05:40 AM.
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    He simply abides. SD_GR's Avatar
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    This is a great event. The stages are open and quick and people have to take racing lines no matter what the surface so they bomb over potholes, ruts, rocks, etc. Fun to watch and good for breaking stuff.
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    Shakedown times:

    P. Driver Car Time Run
    1 S. Loeb Citroen C4 2:32.7 3
    2 X. Pons Impreza WRC 2:34.1 4
    3 F. Duval Xsara WRC 2:34.5 3
    4 M. Gronholm Focus RS WRC 07 2:34.7 5
    5 D. Sordo Citroen C4 2:34.9 3
    6 J. Latvala Focus RS WRC 06 2:35.5 3
    7 C. Atkinson Impreza WRC 2:36.1 4
    8 M. Hirvonen Focus RS WRC 07 2:36.9 3
    9 P. Solberg Impreza WRC 2:36.9 4
    10 M. Stohl Xsara WRC 2:38.2 4
    11 F. Villagra Focus RS WRC 06 2:40.0 3
    12 H. Solberg Focus RS WRC 06 2:40.6 4
    13 M. Wilson Focus RS WRC 06 2:41.1 4
    14 L. Companc Focus RS WRC 06 2:43.3 4
    15 K. Qassimi Focus RS WRC 06 2:45.1 4
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    Day 1

    from rally-live.com

    Overall as of SS3:

    1.Loeb - C4 - 40'45"1
    2.Sordo - C4 - 40'52"4
    3.Gronholm - Ford - 40'58"3
    4.Hirvonen - Ford - 41'15"6
    5.Duval - Xsara - 41'15"6
    6.P.Solberg - Subaru - 41'39"2
    7.Latvala - Ford - 41'53"0
    8.Atkinson - Subaru - 41'53"9
    9.Pons - Subaru - 41'57"7
    10.H.Solberg - Ford - 43'37"2
    Last edited by Weasel 555; 10-05-2007 at 05:13 AM.
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    Loeb is blowing them away! Got almost a minute on Petter on the first day!
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    SS4 overall:

    1.Sordo - C4 - 53'23"8
    2.Loeb - C4 - 53'24"5
    3.Gronholm - Ford - 53'48"8
    4.Hirvonen - Ford - 54'01"7
    5.Duval - Xsara - 54'13"2
    6.P.Solberg - Subaru - 54'27"8
    7.Atkinson - Subaru - 54'48"3
    8.Latvala - Ford - 54'51"9
    9.Pons - Subaru - 54'52"6
    10.H.Solberg - Ford - 57'07"3
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    from www.rally-live.com

    End of Day 1 Overall:

    1.Loeb - C4 - 1h22'16"5
    2.Sordo - C4 - 1h22'27"8
    3.Gronholm - Ford - 1h23'07"1
    4.Hirvonen - Ford - 1h23'09"7
    5.Duval - Xsara - 1h23'42"3
    6.P.Solberg - Subaru - 1h23'51"9
    7.Latvala - Ford - 1h24'25"7
    8.Atkinson - Subaru - 1h24'36"7
    9.Pons - Subaru - 1h25'34"8
    10.H.Solberg - Ford - 1h27'59"8



    The last stage of Rally Catalunya's first leg is Pratdip: a dirty, bumpy, and challenging ride where driver control and tyre grip is primordial for a good run. Add to that the dark rainclouds which appeared and poured heavy rain all over, and the route became a nice test of driving know-how and savvy!

    In this exercise, the Citroën team drivers proved best prepared to handle the situation, with Sébastien Loeb taking 16'16"7 to make his way through the stage, a surprising 14.9 seconds ahead of team mate Dani Sordo. "I fought really hard on this stage," said Loeb. "I tried to push and I got good rhythm."

    Loeb's Spaniard team mate was pleased with his good performances on home soil. "The stage is very difficult in these conditions, I drove carefully," Sordo said. "I am very happy with second position."

    After such a dominant show over the previous stage, the Ford team had a hard time of it here. Mikko Hirvonen's 23.6-second lag into third place was obviously not to his liking: "We have the wrong setup, and wrong tyres, but this is how it is. We have to keep on going."

    Subaru's Petter Solberg was feeling rather good about his fourth position, his best today.

    "I am happy, it's been a good day," he reported, adding: "There is quite a lot of rain, it is very tricky."

    "It is a little bit too hard and slippery," echoed fifth-placed François Duval. The Kronos driver set good pace today but holds no hopes of catching up to Mikko Hirvonen, his nearest rival in the rankings. "It is not possible with this car," the Belgian admitted.

    Marcus Grönnholm's spirits were in worse shape after reaching the end of the route a full 33.8 seconds after the stage winner, taking sixth place. His comment sums it all: "I hate tarmac rallies."

    Stobart Ford's Jari-Matti Latvala came very close to overtaking Grönholm since he sits in seventh place only 0'00"1 behind. "I was afraid of how it was going to be, but it was surprisingly good with these tyres," said the Finn, clearly in contrast with the feelings of the driver preceding him.
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    thanks for the updates, chuckles..
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    Day 2

    SWRT quotes after SS10:
    Generally speaking, the Subaru drivers have been improving their overall performances today. Petter Solberg is pleased with the second leg so far, Xevi Pons is looking forward to the next runs, and Chris Atkinson has gotten over a scare that could have been costly.

    Petter Solberg:
    "We had a little understeer during the stages this morning, but overall no real problems. I made the suspension slightly too stiff which caused the understeer, so in service we will change the setup for the afternoon loop. We'll back off the adjustments which will improve the handling again, and will continue to develop the feeling in the car for the second part of today."

    Chris Atkinson:
    "I had a really close moment on SS 8 when I turned into a corner, expecting it to slide a little and the car just gripped. We hit the guardrail on the inside, and the impact ripped the wheel out of my hands. We slewed across the road and hit the outside guardrail which put the car up on two wheels. We were very lucky not to roll.

    Then on the next stage there's a corner you take flat in fifth, and with the damaged rear wheel and tyre it was the biggest drift I have ever done! So all in all it's been an eventful morning, but we are looking forward to the second loop."

    Xevi Pons:
    "Today we have no problems with the car and it feels good. We had a small off in the middle section of SS 9 which cost us time, but otherwise today has been better for us. SS 8 is very fast but this morning it was tricky as parts were wet and some dry, but by the second pass this afternoon it will be all dry so I am looking forward to it. There are a lot of local fans out on the stages today, cheering and waving, which is great for me to see."


    from rally-live

    SS11 overall:
    1.Loeb - C4 - 2h04'25"0
    2.Sordo - C4 - 2h04'37"9
    3.Gronholm - Ford - 2h05'10"3
    4.Hirvonen - Ford - 2h05'23"8
    5.Duval - Xsara - 2h06'07"6
    6.P.Solberg - Subaru - 2h06'32"5
    7.Latvala - Ford - 2h07'04"5
    8.Atkinson - Subaru - 2h07'33"3
    9.Pons - Subaru - 2h08'30"8
    10.H.Solberg - Ford - 2h11'42"9
    Last edited by Weasel 555; 10-06-2007 at 05:38 AM.
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    Thanks!
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    Day 3 guess who the winner was !

    rally-live.com
    The final stage of Rally Catalunya has been completed on the beautiful Costa Daurada by a last run through a route that switches from racing-circuit conditions to village bumpiness and back again.

    Although Marcus Gr&#246;nholm had the last word on stage by being the fastest driver through, the rally itself goes to a dominating S&#233;bastien Loeb: second-placed on stage, first-placed on the final podium.

    It is Loeb's third successive victory on Spanish soil. "I hope we will do the same result in Corsica," he declared upon crossing the finish line, taking time to thank his Citro&#235;n Sport teammmate: "Sordo was a great support for us."

    With this predicted result, the Citro&#235;n team records its third consecutive one-two win in Spain (Loeb/Duval in 2005, Loeb/Sordo in 2006 and now 2007).

    Defeat loomed in Gr&#246;nholm's mind when a wrong tyre choice on Friday's last leg cost him precious time; he was never in a position to recuperate after that.

    "In stage six I lost 34 seconds," the works Ford driver related, pointing out the main reason for what he considers as a disappointing result despite his place on the third step of podium. "I was too careful. I hope in Corsica I will do better."

    Dani Sordo was very proud of the important part he played, not only for the Citro&#235;n team but also for his championship-chasing teammate: "It has been a great rally for me."

    In what is a fantastic and symbolic co&#239;ncidence, both Loeb and Sordo set identical times on today's final run!

    In fourth position for this stage, Subaru's Petter Solberg seemed satisfied with what he thought of as a full-scale test session for the upcoming rally in Corsica: "A step forward this week-end, definitely."

    Mikko Hirvonen took fifth place for the official Ford team. The young Finn made quite a strange and surprising discovery after disembarking from his Focus car when he happened to notice a soft drink can stuck beneath his accelerator!

    Subaru's Xevi Pons came next in position number six, followed by a very pleased Jari-Matti Latvala, who did well at the wheel of his Stobart Ford Focus by deserving the seventh spot overall. "It is my best result on tarmac," he expressed. "We were able to do some progress, and that is the main thing."


    1.Loeb - C4 - 3h22'50"5
    2.Sordo - C4 - 3h23'04"3
    3.Gronholm - Ford - 3h23'30"3
    4.Hirvonen - Ford - 3h24'16"3
    5.Duval - Xsara - 3h25'19"2
    6.P.Solberg - Subaru - 3h25'44"6
    7.Latvala - Ford - 3h26'28"7
    8.Atkinson - Subaru - 3h27'12"9
    9.Pons - Subaru - 3h27'54"6
    10.H.Solberg - 3h33'22"7

    Drivers Championship (4 rallies left)
    1.Gronholm - 96
    2.Loeb - 90
    3.Hirvonen - 74
    4.Sordo - 39
    5.P.Solberg -34

    MFR Championship (4 rallies left)
    1.Ford - 170
    2.Citroen - 131
    3.Subaru - 64

    Next is the Tour de Corse (Loebs "home" event) Oct 12-14
    Last edited by Weasel 555; 10-07-2007 at 06:05 AM.
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    Registered User WRXelent's Avatar
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    Thanks for keeping us informed So.....Do you think he'll hold em off?
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