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Monte Magic!

ISSUE 166 • 20 JAN 2011

Features

http://handbrakeshairpins.wordpress.com Ford reveals new colours, P6

Events DDR, RR, P1 P12

News

BRC and Irish rally news UUSA rallying news aand updates

Historic HHi istoric t i rally ll events, P8

IIRC, R P16

Hopkirk tests MINI WRC, P11

WRC and IRC VVWR, W P15 WR new news updates


Contents / Issue 166 04

Editorial Information Editor Evan Rothman Photojournalist Eva Kovkova Contributors RallyBuzz, Motorpics, Liga Stirna, Newspress. All content copyrighted property of HANDBRAKES & HAIRPINS, 200710. This publication is fully protected by copyright and nothing may be reprinted in whole or in part without written permission from the editor. While reasonable precautions have been taken to ensure the accuracy of information from sources and given to readers, the editor cannot accept responsibility for any inconvenience or damage that may arise therefrom.

Contact E-mail us evan.hhmag@gmail.com Call us +27 83 452 6892 Surf us http://wp.me/pkXc To receive your FREE weekly HANDBRAKES & HAIRPINS eMagazine, or if you’d like to share this with a friend please send your e-mail address to evan.hhmag@gmail.com. HANDBRAKES & HAIRPINS is not a SPAM e-mail: email addresses are added to the mailing list voluntarily.

News

04 05 05

Daily Online Updates Sordo joins MINI for 2011 WRC season Fan Foto Framed

06

Features

06 07 07 08 09 10 10 11 11 12

Ford’s new WRC livery revealed Sandell and Axelsson part for 2011 Foust unveils newracer for 2011 Spectacular historic rallying events in UK Preparation key to success in Monte Carlo Hirvonen donates winnings to charity Skoda unveils new livery for IRC Solberg signs major new sponsors Paddy Hopkirk tests new MINI WRC Raikkonen signs for more WRC in 2011

12

Events

12 14 15 16

Dakar Rally Review, pt 3 Autosport Show Review Voru Winter Rally Review IRC Monte Carlo Rally, Day One Review

Welcome to H&H! Welcome to issue 166 of HANDBRAKES & HAIRPINS, your FREE weekly insight into the world of rallying. As always, I hope you enjoy this week’s exciting edition. Yours in Rallying, Evan Rothman

THE LATEST NEWS FROM THE WORLD OF RALLYING

RallyBuzz.com features European rally championships, British rallying, RallyCar events, international rally results and videos, as well as S2000 and WRC news.

www.RallyBuzz.com

s e k a r b d n Ha Hairpins

&

e world of rallying

your insight into th

Bringing you the latest international rally news, extensive event previews and reviews, indepth feature and technical articles, awardwinning photography and insightful columnists, HANDBRAKES & HAIRPINS is distributed to your e-mail inbox each week for FREE in the form of a high-quality 2MB .PDF file. To receive this FREE eMagazine (in .PDF format), please send an email to evanrothman@gmail.com.

http://handbrakeshairpins.wordpress.com


Happy New Year!!! Wishing you the best of luck for the 2011 season

We have a large selection of seats, harnesses, steering wheels, racewear and various other goodies arriving from middle January 2011, so remember to pop in or send us an e-mail with all your requirements and we will gladly assist.

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News

>>MORE NEWS For even more news, with daily updates, visit http://wp.me/pkXc

HANDBRAKES & HAIRPINS

Team & Event News WRC IRC South African Rallying DAILY ONLINE UPDATES For your convenience, here are the news items in this easy-toclick menu page: WORLD RALLY CHAMPIONSHIP Sandell/Axelsson part ways: http://wp.me/ppkXc-2ou Hirvonen donates 6,900 Euros: http://wp.me/ppkXc-2os P. Solberg signs major sponsors: http://wp.me/ppkXc-2o5 Ford Fiesta RS WRC livery: http://wp.me/ppkXc-2nD Sandell ready for Rally Sweden: http://wp.me/ppkXc-2ow New Ford at Arctic Lapland Rally: http://wp.me/ppkXc-2p5

2011 Mt. Washington Hillclimb: http://wp.me/ppkXc-2nS Boston Globe’s “The Big Picture”: http://wp.me/ppkXc-2oS Sno*Drift Rally: http://wp.me/ppkXc-2pd RECOMMENDED YOUTUBE RALLY VIDEOS: Mercedes Benz 190 Evo Rally: http://wp.me/ppkXc-2kr Rally of the Tall Pines 2010: http://wp.me/ppkXc-2oq

BRITISH AND IRISH RALLYING Citroën Racing Trophy 2011: http://wp.me/ppkXc-2o3 Pirelli with Citroen Racing Trophy: http://wp.me/ppkXc-2o0 Harry Hunt at Monte Carlo: http://wp.me/ppkXc-2nX BRC opens 2011 registrations: http://wp.me/ppkXc-2nQ Donington Historic Festival: http://wp.me/ppkXc-2oG EUROPEAN AND INTERCONTINENTAL RALLY CHALLENGE Guy Wilks and Monte Carlo: http://wp.me/ppkXc-2og Campana for Rallye Monte Carlo: http://wp.me/ppkXc-2od Mikkelsen ready for Monte Carlo: http://wp.me/ppkXc-2p7 Skoda unveils new livery: http://wp.me/ppkXc-2oC SimulCam technology for live IRC Monte Carlo Rally coverage: http://wp.me/ppkXc-2pa INTERNATIONAL RALLYING AND OFF-ROAD RACING Sacremento Bee’s “The Frame”: http://wp.me/ppkXc-2oN Foust unveils new racer for 2011: http://wp.me/ppkXc-2oj

THIS WEEK’S BEST VIDEO << The Group B era of rallying ended in the second half of the 1980s, but it remains the “Golden Era” of world rallying for many fans. Here is a great video for your viewing pleasure to see why: http://t.co/hbh3VvS At the top of each page, a tabbed section contains video clicks we recommend viewing. In other tabbed sections, we have linked articles posted on our website that will add more perspective and insight into the article it accompanies. Together with the videos, HANDBRAKES & HAIRPINS aims to offer readers a fully-interactive reading experience. Send evanrothman@gmail.com your favourite rally-related videos to to be featured in this section. Or, send us a twitter to @Evan_Rothman or a message on Facebook.

THE LATEST NEWS FROM THE WORLD OF RALLYING

RallyBuzz.com features European rally championships, British rallying, RallyCar events, international rally results and videos, as well as S2000 and WRC news.

www.RallyBuzz.com


NEWS

Features

Events

Issue 166 • 20 Jan 2011

Download H&H’s FREE January Rally Calendar: http://bit.ly/fdrmsh

FAN FOTO FRAMED

Got a great shot from a rally? Send your favourite rally photograph to evan.hhmag@gmail.com to be featured here! Picture by Alexander Oh.

Download H&H’s FREE January Rally Calendar: http://bit.ly/fdrmsh

KIMI FOR THE WRC TITLE 2011 Words: Staff Writer Twitter is a fantastic platform for rally people to connect and share information. This week, Katarina Durecova (@sackrebleu) posted this wonderful cartoon she created. It captures the build-up to the season-opening WRC Rally Sweden succinctly. Follow her: http://twitter.com/sackrebleu. H&H

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Interviews Exclusive columnists In-depth articles

FORD UNVEILS NEW LIVERY FOR 2011 WRC SEASON Words: Staff Writer Pictures: Ford Abu Dhabi WRT Ford’s all-new Fiesta RS World Rally Car was revealed in its 2011specification last week when the company unveiled the colour scheme that will adorn the car in the FIA World Rally Championship. Team driver Mikko Hirvonen and Ford of Europe motorsport chief Gerard Quinn unveiled the livery for the eye-catching Fiesta RS WRC at the Autosport International Racing Car Show in Birmingham, motorsport’s traditional start-of-season showcase event. Ford’s official WRC squad for 2011 also confirmed its new name and logo - it will compete as the Ford Abu Dhabi World Rally Team. Title partner Abu Dhabi will continue its support throughout 2011 and its distinctive branding will also feature strongly in the new-look livery. Abu Dhabi has been a team partner since 2007 and Emirati driver Khalid Al Qassimi will drive a third Fiesta RS WRC in support of team-mates Hirvonen and Jari-Matti Latvala. The team will also be sponsored

by Castrol, the world’s leading lubricants brand and a partner since 2005. Branding for Castrol EDGE, its global range of best-in-class motor oils, will feature prominently in the Fiesta RS WRC’s livery. BP, Castrol’s parent company, plans to promote the Castrol EDGE range of advanced synthetic oils, and demonstrate their strength to perform in the demanding surroundings of the WRC. “The preview version of the car we unveiled in September at the 2010 Paris Motor Show was dramatic in its blue and grey livery, developed specifically for the show by Ford of Europe’s design team,” said Quinn. “But now we have a fully finished car in a really eye-catching new livery plus a new team name, and excitement is building throughout the squad as we prepare for the opening round in Sweden next month. “Ford’s designers and product development engineers have worked closely and efficiently alongside the expertise of our partners at M-Sport. The aim was, of course, to produce a car capable of challenging for world

championship titles, but one which also reflects the much-admired ‘kinetic design’ styling cues synonymous with Ford’s current road vehicles,” added Quinn. Ford’s WRC challenger, derived from the best-selling Fiesta road car, has been developed by Ford of Europe and British-based rally partner M-Sport. It is based on the Fiesta S2000 rally car, which won the legendary Monte Carlo Rally in January 2010 and other international and national rallies during the season. The Fiesta RS WRC will form part of a new era in the world championship, for which a revised cost-effective formula is introduced this season. It boasts four-wheel drive transmission and a 1.6-litre turbocharged engine, based on the new Ford EcoBoost road vehicle power plant, to comply with the new regulations. The full specification of the car will be available at the beginning of February. Testing will continue in Sweden next week ahead of the Fiesta RS WRC’s championship debut in Rally Sweden, the opening round of the series, on 10 - 13 February. H&H


News

FEATURES

Issue 166 • 20 Jan 2011

Events

Download H&H’s FREE January Rally Calendar: http://bit.ly/fdrmsh

FOUST UNVEILS NEW RACER FOR 2011 SEASON Words: Staff Writer

SANDELL AND AXELSSON PART WAYS FOR 2011 Words: Staff Writer Pictures: Red Bull Rallye After seven successful years together, Patrik Sandell and Emil Axelsson announced they will go their separate ways in 2011. “We’ve been a great team for several years and have won a lot together,” says Patrik Sandell. “But, for a while we’ve been discussing what we could do to develop even more individually and we came to the conclusion that we both wanted to see what happened if we made this change.”

Sandell and Axelsson won the Junior World Rally Championship in 2006, and silver in Super 2000 World Rally Championship in 2010. “We’ve had a long, fun and successful collaboration together, and it feels great that we could end it on a high note,” says Emil Axelsson. Axelsson is now teaming up with P-G. Andersson for the IRC’s Monte Carlo Rally, while Sandell will be joined by Staffan Parmander as a co-driver for WRC Rally Sweden in February. H&H

Tanner Foust unveiled a new look on Thursday for his 2011 rallycross Ford Fiesta at the Autosport International Show in Birmingham, UK. The American driver and TV host will campaign the Rockstar-etnies Ford Fiesta, with the support of the Swedish Olsbergs MSE team, in the European Rallycross Championship as he makes a run for the title in 2011. He is the first American ever to compete in the FIA European Rallycross Championship. “It is great to fly the American flag overseas and when it comes down to it, it’s driver against driver,” said Foust. “The real pleasure I get out of it is bringing this sport to the US and showing people at home how cool this sport is and how much potential it has.” He was an immediate threat in a limited 2010 European Rallycross campaign that took him to Portugal, the United Kingdom, Sweden, Germany, and Czech Republic. “I got a taste of it last year and I’m looking forward to battling it out again in 2011,” said Foust. “I’m really enjoying it: the series is very competitive, and the fans are educated and enthusiastic.” In the United States, Foust took a pair of gold medals at the X Games Rally competitions, and finished on the podium at all four of the inaugural US rallycross races. The 2011 Rockstar-etnies Ford Fiesta is a 600hp all-wheel drive vehicle, purposebuilt for rallycross. Developed by the Swedish Olsbergs MSE team, the car is similar to the one Foust campaigned on the European and US rallycross championships in 2010, and which bashed and jumped its way to double gold medals at X Games in 2010. Also at the show is a sneak preview of the new line of Tanner Foust merchandise, which will be available for sale later this year at select etnies dealers worldwide. “Our sponsors are heavily involved in youth-oriented action sports and the new look of the team reflects that,” said Foust “It’s an American look and feel.” Images are available on our website at: http://bit.ly/gzQwJJ H&H


Issue 166 • 20 Jan 2011

News

FEATURES

Events

Download H&H’s FREE January Rally Calendar: http://bit.ly/fdrmsh

SPECTACULAR HISTORIC RALLYING EVENTS IN 2011 Words: Evan Rothman Picture: Newspress British rally enthusiasts are in for two special treats hin the coming months, Race Retro and the Donnington Historic Festival pay tribute to rallying’s most iconic and fiercest machines. First up on the calendar will be Race Retro, from 25-27 February at Stoneleigh Park, Coventry. An impressive selection of rally cars from the 1970s to the present day’s top rally cars will be on display and in action on the Live Rally Stage. Sure to attract the crowds in their droves will be witnessing Miki Biasion behind ht ewheel of the Lancia Delta Integrale he piloted in the 1990s, in a celebration Race Retro has planned for the Italian manufacturer. Also in action will be a Lancia Fulvia HF to be driven by Tony Graham. A Vauxhall Chevette HS works rally car will see stage action once again, and organisers are tempting the original driver Jimmy McRae to don his helmet for this special outing of this rare machine. This particular car was built in 1978 by Bill Blydenstein’s famous Dealer Team Vauxhall (DTV) in Shepreth in 1978. The car competed on numerous events with McRae at the wheel, and

recorded a seventh place overall on the Mintex Rally, second on the Circuit of Ireland and top positions in Welsh and Scottish events too. Also in attendance will be Jeff Williamson’s newest rally car, the exworks FIA Group A Mercedes Benz 190 Cosworth built for Danny Snobeck in the 1980s, but this car was more famously seen in the German Tuouring Car Championship. A special Firenza V8, a recreation of the 1972 South African GM Dealer Team car as used by Jan Hettema will also make another appearance after its debut last year. Only 100 of these 360bhp cars were built as “homologation specials” to compete against South Africa Ford’s V8 engined Perana (Capri). Hettema himself gave builder Mick Strafford a great deal of technical advice and help with original details during the building of this car to ensure it is a faithful representation of the original works car. The much-loved Metro 6R4s will also take to the Live Rally Stage. They are joined by two Ford RS200s, a pair of Opel Manta 400s, an Audi Quattro Sport and a Peugeot 205 T16 – models representing the pinnacle of mid-‘80s rallying. There will also be an example of its arch-rival Ford Escort Mk2, a highlyrare Nissan 240RS and a Triumph TR7

V8. A brace of Talbot Sambas revives ‘80s-style club rallying and proves they can still be on the pace. The pinnacle of ‘70s rallying might is represented by Lancia with a Stratos being joined by a Fiat 131 Abarth and, from the 1980s, a Fiat Strada Abarth. To book tickets and the latest news, visit http://www.raceretro.com. The second event not to be missed is the Donnington Historic Festival taking place on 29 April to 1 May. Focusing on Group B cars, this event is billed as a “full power demonstration of these iconic too fast to race rally machines.” From 1972 to the 1990s, Donnington was used as a stage for the annual RAC Rally. Coming back to the circuit will be original works rally machines with the “Rallying with Group B” club members putting their cars through the stage as well. The likes of fire-spitting Audi Quattros, MG Metros 6R4s, Ford RS200s, Lancia 037s, Porsche 911 RSRs, Peugeot 205 T16s, as well as an exotic Group B Ferrari 308 GTB. The cars and drivers will attack a specially-designed allasphalt stage set on the GP loop and access to spectators will be unrestricted. See http://www.doningtonhistoric.com fo rmore news and information. H&H


News

FEATURES

Issue 166 • 20 Jan 2011

Events

Download H&H’s FREE January Rally Calendar: http://bit.ly/fdrmsh

HIRVONEN DONATES WINNINGS TO AID NEWBORN BABIES Words: Evan Rothman

PREPARATION KEY FOR MONTE SUCCESS Words: Staff Writer Pictures: Jakob Ebrey Photography It was 100 years ago that the first Monte Carlo Rally took place and this year’s rally will be the first one for Peugeot UK’s Guy Wilks and Phil Pugh in a Peugeot 207 S2000. The first Monte Carlo Rally ran in 1911 and it is still (possibly) the most iconic rally in the world. This year it will provide the backdrop to Peugeot UK’s new driver pairing, Guy Wilks and Phil Pugh as they kick off their own as well as Peugeot UK’s third IRC Campaign. The rally starts on Wednesday 19th January and finishes in the early hours of Saturday 22nd January, in Monte Carlo. The rally for Wilks/Pugh started well before the starting ramp in Valence on Tuesday 18th January. It began before Christmas with a visit to Kronos to see the building of their Peugeot UK 207 S2000 and to meet their new team followed by a test to familiarise

themselves with their new car. The test, however, did not go to plan; Phil was unable to make the test as he could not fly from the UK due to heavy snow. Guy did make the test and with the help of Xavier Panseri as his temporary codriver he was able to complete a very successful first drive and test of the Peugeot 207 S2000. Three years ago, the Monte Carlo Rally became the starting event for the Intercontinental Rally Challenge (IRC) and that year it was won by Sebastien Ogier in a Peugeot 207 S2000, with two other Peugeot 207 S2000s driven by Freddy Loix and Stephane Sarrazin, making it an all Peugeot Podium. Guy and Phil will, therefore, be hoping the Peugeot Magic returns to the “Monte” and, with a little luck, they can finally provide Peugeot UK with the podium position in Monte Carlo they have been working for over the last two years. H&H

Flying Finn Mikko Hirvonen and his co-driver Jarmo Lehtinen donated 6,900 Euros to the children’s ward of Mikko’s home town hospital. The 6,900 Euros is a sum that Hirvonen and Lehtinen collected from fastest special stage times they set in 2010 as well as the money they were rewarded with upon winning the IRC Monte Carlo Rally last Janaury. “For a long time me and my co-driver Jarmo Lehtinen wanted to give our share to a children’s charity. After discussions, we found a suitable target from my home city of Jyväskylä,” says Hirvonen. “The winnings we’ve received this year goes to the newborn section of my home city’s hospital. The people behind this cause can then choose suitable target for the money.” Before season 2010 start Hirvonen promised to donate 100 Euros to charity for each fastest special stage time he set. In a colourful season he drove 19 fastest special stage times. Then, he added 5,000 Euros from the Monte Carlo Rally victory to the money pot. Hirvonen donated the money at December 23th to the hospital in Jyväskylä. H&H

Download H&H’s FREE January Rally Calendar: http://bit.ly/fdrmsh


Issue 166 • 20 Jan 2011

News

FEATURES

Events

Download H&H’s FREE January Rally Calendar: http://bit.ly/fdrmsh

SKODA UNVEILS NEW LIVERY Words: Staff Writer Pictures: Newspress A total of 10 Fabia Super 2000 will appear at the legendary Monte Carlo Rally this month (19th-22nd). This is the opening round of the 2011 Intercontinental Rally Challenge Series (IRC), in which Škoda will defend its 2010 Manufacturers’ and Drivers’ titles. Škoda Motorsport (factory team) will appear with both of its successful crews – last year’s IRC winners Juho Hänninen ans Mikko Markkula and runners-up, Jan Kopecký and Petr Starý. Škoda Motorsport’s allconquering Fabia Super 2000 project has received positive feedback from Škoda importers in many markets. As a result, the Monte Carlo Rally will see some big names driving a Fabia Super 2000, including Škoda UK Motorsport’s new driver Andreas Mikkelsen, the 2008 IRC Drivers’ Champion Nicolas Vouilloz, Freddy Loix (winner of three IRC races in 2010) and Mark Wallenwein of Škoda Auto Germany. A number of other Fabia Super 2000 are going to appear in the

colours of private teams, all of whom are planning to fight for the best possible result in Monte Carlo, one of the world’s most challenging rally events. The Škoda Motorsport team will introduce an updated livery for Monte Carlo – the most striking element of which is the strong shade of green which has become synonymous with the Škoda brand. In contrast with the design used over the past few years, the new green-and-white combination has been reversed. The front doors will also bear a logo commemorating 110 years of Škoda’s participation in motorsport – an accolade only a handful of manufacturers can claim. The Monte Carlo Rally starts on 19 January in the area around Valence, France, and ends with night-time special stages in the mountains near Monte Carlo in the early hours of the morning on 22 January. Drivers can look forward to a total of 13 special stages (337 competition kilometres) and over a thousand kilometres of road sections plus unpredictable weather, as is usual this time of the year. H&H

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SOLBERG SIGNS MAJOR SPONSORS Words: Staff Writer Petter Solberg has now signed up with two major sponsors: EnterCard and TOOLS. Both have been with the team since the start in 2009, and the new deal makes EnterCard and TOOLS a bigger part of the team for 2011. “I am very pleased that both EnterCard and TOOLS decided to stay with us in the Petter Solberg World Rally Team for one more year,” says Petter Solberg. “It is important for us to have dedicated and professional sponsors, and our podium in the Championship last year would not have been possible without them.” EnterCard and re:member have been well displayed on the rallycar for the last seasons, and will also be a big part of the team in 2011. TOOLS are also supplying the team with all the tools and equipment the team needs to run a rally car. The first event this year is Rally Sweden, on 10 – 13 February 2011, where Petter will compete in a Citroën DS3 WRC. H&H

Bringing you the latest international rally news, extensive event previews and reviews, indepth feature and technical articles, awardwinning photography and insightful columnists, HANDBRAKES & HAIRPINS is distributed to your e-mail inbox each week for FREE in the form of a high-quality 2MB .PDF file. To receive this FREE eMagazine (in .PDF format), please send an email to evanrothman@gmail.com.

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News

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Issue 166 • 20 Jan 2011

Events

Download H&H’s FREE January Rally Calendar: http://bit.ly/fdrmsh

PADDY HOPKIRK TESTS NEW MINI COUNTRYMAN WRC Words: Staff Writer In the 1960s, Northern Ireland’s Paddy Hopkirk became a national sporting hero for his giant-killing achievements at the wheel of a Mini Cooper S rally car, reported the website http://www.wrc.com. Last week, 47 years after his landmark victory at the 1964 Monte Carlo Rally, Hopkirk took a ride in the firm’s latest rally challenger, the MINI Countryman WRC, alongside factory team driver Kris Meeke. Hopkirk, 77, strapped into the co-drivers seat for three laps of the adverse handling circuit at Prodrive’s test track in Warwickshire, UK, and afterwards talked to the website http://www.wrc.com about the experience. Q: It’s been a few years since you sat in a World Rally Car - how did you enjoy the ride? “It has changed a bit - but then again a lot of it hasn’t changed! Kris is very good, very smooth and it was most enjoyable. The one thing he had that was very different was a big digital number telling him which gear he was in. That would have been useful in my day, but of course we didn’t have as many gears. Another big difference is he doesn’t touch the clutch - he was always braking with his left foot. The handbrake is probably used more than in our day. He uses it to set the car up at high speed - while we would have only used the handbrake on very slow corners. The grip is terrific. Now I’d like to have a ride on the loose.” Q: Would you like to be behind the wheel yourself? “No, I wouldn’t thank you! I wouldn’t mind trying it when nobody was looking, but as you get older your reactions get worse, you sight goes, everything goes, and you don’t want to make an idiot of yourself. A few of my friends have done it and hurt themselves and I don’t really want to do that.” Q: You must be happy to see the MINI name returning to rallying? “Absolutely. And I hope Mini will bring rallying back into the public eye again, and people who owned a Mini way back then will hope this new MINI wins. Back in those days it [rallying] was front page news; it wasn’t seen as just motorsport. We were driving for our country - it was more like the Olympics. There were

27 million viewers when I was on the [television] show, Sunday night at the Palladium! Kris is a good ambassador for the sport; he can speak much better than I could and he’s a qualified mechanical engineer, so he knows what he is on about.” Q: Your rallying successes with the Mini really captured the public’s imagination. “When I won the Monte, I had a telegram from the British prime minister and another from the prime minter of Northern Ireland. Of course it wasn’t just me, I was lucky, I was a competent driver and we had a wonderful team. The car was a little cheap family saloon that Alex Issigonis designed as the district nurses’ car. And here it was beating cars that were much more expensive, and big teams like Citroen, Mercedes and Ford. It was becoming the ‘in’ car to have and [Mini motorsport guru] John Cooper used to say, if you drove up to the big house there were two Minis outside; the ordinary Cooper that belonged to the cook and the Mini Cooper S that belonged to his Lordship. So it became a sort of classless car, the Royal family brought it and everybody else, it was great.” Q: How do you rate Kris’s chances this year against the current crop of WRC drivers, including Sebastien Loeb and - like in the 1960s - a selection of rapid Finns? “Back then the Scandinavians were left foot braking and were used to driving on snow and ice with studs, much more than we were. But nowadays I think most of the top drivers are very equally competent. I think Kris is terrific, I really do. I think he is smooth in the car so he will get good results. Also, being an engineer he will be able help develop the car and I hope it will help the engineers at Prodrive and at BMW to do a proper job.” H&H

RAIKKONEN SIGNED UP FOR MORE WRC IN 2011 Words: http://www.RallyBuzz.com Former Grand Prix World Champion Kimi Raikkonen “will definitely be racing” this year on the World Rally Championship according to his management who have scotched rumours of the Finn’s retirement from the sport, reported the website http://www.wrc.com. The Finn has yet to formally announce a programme for 2011, but his management team say that they are confident he will be out on the majority of the rallies this year at the wheel of a Citroen DS3 WRC. Raikkonen has lodged an entry on this year’s World Championship under the ICE1 Racing banner, and he is likely to compete on at least 10 of this year’s 13 rounds, with funding from private sponsors. His manager Steve Robertson commented: “Kimi will definitely be out racing this year. The stories that say he won’t be doing anything are very much wide of the mark. But with his limited experience, it may be better for him to do some additional testing while the others are competing.” In order to contain costs, Raikkonen is likely to give the long-haul events that are not likely to form part of the World Rally Championship in future a miss this year. While the Finn is not ruling out a return to Formula One in 2012, he admitted that it would be much harder to return to Grand Prix racing after taking two years off. “It’s not impossible, but it certainly makes it harder to go back, the longer you leave it,” said Raikkonen. “If I missed Formula One I would have gone back, but in fact I haven’t missed it at all.” Rally Sweden, which opens this World Rally Championship from 11 - 13 February, will mark the first time that Raikkonen takes part on an event in a factory World Rally Car for the second time. H&H

Download H&H’s FREE January Rally Calendar: http://bit.ly/fdrmsh


Events

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TALES OF COURAGE: DAKAR RALLY 2011 Words: Evan Rothman Pictures: Volkswagen Motorsport/DPPI After an exhausting 9,500km of rallying, three men that started this event among favourites were greeted as winners. Marc Coma (KTM) claimed his third win of the Bikes category in the Dakar Rally and Vladimir Chagin (Kamaz) underlined his supremacy in this class to set the bar ever higher in this rally-raid. Qatari Nasser Al-Attiyah (Volkswagen) challenged teammate Carlos Sainz through every stage and overcame his rival to claim his first victory at this prestigious event. After 16 days and 13 stages of rally action, only 94 bikes, 55 cars and 41 trucks were classified as finishers... of the over 400 registered teams! Bikes: For the past six years, two men have dominated the Bike category; Marc Coma and Cyril Despres (KTM) have stood head and shoulders above their rivals. As proof of this is the gap to the third-placed rider Helder Rodrigues (Yamaha) finished at 01hr 40min behind. This the 33rd edition of the

marathon event eventually turned in favour of Coma due to two unfortunate race incidents. The first was disciplinary in nature when Despres received a 10min time penalty for failing to respect the rules in the starting zone in a stage inthe first week. The second, and most significant incident, took place on the route to Chilecito: in an infernal game of cat and mouse, the Frenchman Despres was too hasty and made a mistake in reading the roadbook and ended up on the wrong course for a good few kilometres. Wanting to attack too much, the hunter had fallen into his own trap. Despres was surely thinking he could cause his rival to succumb to the pressure, like in 2007, when the Catalan lost his first place two days from the end due to a fall, but this time it was the Frenchman who lost out. Four days from the end of the race, the gap of over 18min became a margin too wide to leap as Coma rode a perfect race, combining his performance and experience. On his KTM 450 RR, the 34-year old Catalan rider Coma won five special stages, two more than the Frenchman. Crossing the finish line first in the Bikes category, Coma claimed his third victory

of the event, with a margin of 15min 04sec ahead of his archrival Despres. Not only was there a fierce battle for the win, an enthralling fight for third place took place between Francisco Lopez Contardo (Aprilia) and Helder Rodrigues (Yamaha). Lopez Contardo was in control of this position for much of the rally and was even aplying pressure on Despres during the mid stages of the event. With 182km of rallying left on the event, Lopez Contardo had a lead over Rodrigues of 43min. It was on the last stage that this run came to an unfortunate and unhappy end: his bikeâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s suspension arm broke and threw him off the podium. This handed third place to Rodrigues and saw Lopez Contardo drop out of the ten. In the top ten during the first week was Jonah Street, who also won a stage. He dropped from the top ten in the second week, but did the Yamaha brand proud as a privateer. The BMW team left the Dakar Rally 2011 with two stage victories for Paulo Goncalves in Iquique and Frans Verhoeven, its leading representative who finished 15th overall in the general standings. Hondaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s rookie American rider


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Quinn Cody (three times winner of the Baja 1000), progressed well through the event. He placed in the top 15 on ten of the thirteen stages, to reach Buenos Aires in ninth place in his first Dakar experience and had a comfortable 02hr lead on tenth-placed Daniel Gouet (KTM). Another rookie, Spaniard Laia Sanz is not just a pretty face. A multiple world trials champion, she has been expertly coached by Jordi Arcarons and she won the women’s race by finishing in 39th overall in the Bikes category. Hugo Payen won the unassisted class in the Bikes category, finishing in a highly respectable 49th position overall without any team or mechanics support on his race. Cars: Predicting the winner of the Cars category was always going to be a difficult task, a with the Bikes category. However, the 16-day-long event saw two favourites emerge after only the first few stages. Teammates Nasser AlAttiyah and Carlos Sainz (both piloting Volkswagen Race Touareg 3s) were the class acts of the category, with Stephane Peterhansel (BMW X3CC) an outside chance winner. Unfortunately for Peterhansel, mechanical woes demoted this Frenchman out of the podium positions and ruined his chances of a fair fight for the overall victory. Mechanical troubles also put paid to Robby Gordon (Hummer H3) in the 2011 Dakar Rally. His engine died in the first week. More woes were witnessed in the X-Raid bivouac, as their BMW X3CC mahines and ther sole MINI entry were unable to keep pace with the hard-charging Volkswagens. Guerlain Chicherit (MINI) rolled his MINI out of the race on the rest day while showing off for the media. Orlando Terranova and Leonid Novitsky also retired from the

event while in seventh position overall (at different stages of the rally). Krystof Holowycz, the former WRC and Polish rally star, made the team proud when he crossed the finish line in fifht behind his teammate Peterhansel. The fight for the lead and the overall victory raged in the second half of the rally, with Al-Attiyah and Sainz pushing each other throughout the 5,000 remaining kilometres. Al-Attiyah chased Sainz and then gained the lead. Sainz, feeling the pressure, made two significant errors that resulted in Al-Attiyah winning the event. In fact, Sainz lost concentration and confidence and this resulted in teammate Giniel de Villiers sneaking into second place overall. Volkswagen claimed yet another 1-2-3 dominant victory, claiming 12 stage wins of the 13. The fastest of the two-wheel drive buggies was Matthias Kahle (SMG Buggy), who also claimed tenth position overall, and Jun Mitsuhashi (Toyota) won the T2 Production Vehicles class with a lead of over 15hr over his closest rival. Trucks: This class was sure of a Kamaz team win, but it was not clear as to who the winning driver would be... Masterful Vladimir Chagin (Kamaz) led the charge, and relented his lead of the rally to team-mate Firdaus Kabirov on several occassions, but Chagin simply put his foot flat in the following day to not only close the gap but to also leapfrog Kabirov into the lead and to open an advantage. try as hre might, Kabirov was not able to ultimately challenge Chagin for the victory, but the young drivers are slowly closing in on Chagin. None were faster or braver than Ales Loprais (Tatra), but mechanical

problems in the second week of the event saw him drop out. At the finishing line in Buenos Aires, it was a Kamaz 1-2-3-4, with Eduard Nikolaev claiming third and Ilgar Mardeev in fourth. Frans Echter claimed fifth position overall in his MAN truck, the fastest of the non-Kamaz machines. The MANs, Ivecos, Ginafs, Hinos and Tatras were left to fill up the remaining top ten positions, but were literally over ten hours off the lead pace. Pep Vila (Iveco) finished sixth overall, a brave drive. The Dakar Rally is now over for another 12 months, and the weary competitors are making their way back to their homes and to start the FIA Rally-Raid season in a few weeks. This 33rd edition of the Dakar Rlaly was a thrilling and dramatic event, what the competitors and spectators were wanting. Now, we wait for 2012... H&H OVERALL CLASSIFICATION Bikes: 01) M. Coma (KTM) 02) C. Despres (KTM) + 15m 04s 03) H. Rodrigues (Yamaha) + 01hr 40m 20s 04) F. Lopez Contardo (Aprilia) + 02hr 09m 45s 05) J. Pedrero Garcia (KTM) + 03hr 07m 03s 06) P-A. Ullevalseter (KTM) + 03hr 32m 56s 07) J. Azevedo (KTM) + 03hr 59m 38s 08) R. Faria (KTM) + 04hr 13m 01s 09) Q. Cody (Honda) + 04hr 52m 10s 10) J. Czachor (KTM) + 06hr 13m 41s Cars: 01) N. Al-Attiyah (VW) 02) G. De Villiers (VW) + 49m 41s 03) C. Sainz (VW) + 01hr 20m 38s 04) S. Peterhansel (BMW) + 01hr 43m 48s 05) K. Holowycz (BMW) + 04hr 11m 21s 06) M. Miller (VW) + 04hr 54m 42s 07) R. Leal dos Santos (BMW) + 06hr 50m 07s 08) C. Lavielle (Nissan) + 07hr 57m 18s 09) G. Spinelli (Mitsubishi) + 08hr 23m 37s 10) M. Kahle (SMG Buggy) + 15hr 11m 56s Trucks: 01) V. Chagin (Kamaz) 02) F. kabirov (Kamaz) + 30m 04s 03) I. Mardeev (Kamaz) + 05hr 44m 56s 04) F. Echter (MAN) + 05hr 45m 37s 05) P. Vila (Iveco) + 07hr 16m 01s


Issue 166 • 20 Jan 2011

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AUTOSPORT SHOW BRINGS OPENS 2011 RALLY SEASON Words: David Benson Pictures: RallySport Media Autosport International’s “The Racing Car Show” kicked off the 2011 motorsport season in its usual fine fashion over four days at the NEC in Bimringham last weekend with team and car launches, celebrities and the hottest technology on the market available to trade and public, writes David Benson of RallySport Media who covered the event for HANDBRAKES & HAIRPINS. True to form, the event started with a bang as Ford used the opportunity to reveal their new-for-2011 car, the Ford Fiesta WRC, plus their new livery that will adorn the car in their bid for glory in the new-look World Rally Championship (WRC) this season. The team also announced their change of name to the Ford Abu Dhabi World Rally Team.

Skoda UK launched their new-look team for 2011 – a factorybacked effort that will campaign the Intercontinental Rally Challenge (WRC) in 2011 with rapid young Norwegian driver Andreas Mikklesen. The Skoda UK team rose to prominence last year with Guy Wilks and Phil Pugh taking a respectable sixth overall in the IRC. Wilks and Pugh have subsequently moved over to the Peugeot UK team to replace Kris Meeke who has stepped up to a factory World Rally Championship drive in the MINI Countryman WRC. Skoda UK have come in for some criticism recently with their choice of driver, being a UK-backed team, but Mikkelsen reflected on this in an interview with Autosport Magazine: “It’s very important for [the team] this year to compete at the top in IRC and the problem there with the British driver is that no one has experience. There are some drivers that have done a few rounds, but none of them can be up

there fighting for the title.” Soon after the launch of the new Skoda Fabia S2000 car Mikkelsen will campaign in the IRC, the Norwegian ace flew off to Valence for the start of Monte Carlo Rally, celebrating it’s 100 year anniversary. “I’m really looking forward to my first Rallye Monte Carlo, but it will be very difficult,” said Mikkelsen. “The rally begins with the longest two stages of the event, so that will be a challenge for everyone.” There were a few obvious omissions from the event: Citroen and their new DS3 World Rally Car were not on display and Prodrive and MINI’s Countryman WRC has yet to be seen in public. The first round of the World Rally Championship for both the Ford and Citroen teams will be Rally Sweden on 10 - 13 February. MINI and Prodrive will continue development of the Countryman WRC and will only compete on six of 13 rounds this year. H&H


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2011 ESTONIAN RALLYING STARTS WITH 79 CARS Words: Liga Stirna Pictures: Arturs Bets, Aigars Laurinovics (http://www.rallyemotions.lv) This number - 79 - of participating teams opened the first round of the 2011 Estonian Rally Championship, the Võru Winter Rally (or in the local language, the Võrumaa talveralli 2011). Now we can say, the rally season in the Baltics has begun! And it started well with proper winter conditions, with icy, frozen roads, high snow banks, chilly temperatures and even some sun on the day of the rally. Võru Winter Rally was the first round of Estonian Rally Championship, but the entry list was mixed as usual here in Baltics: Ukrainians, Lithuanians, Latvians, Russians, Poles were among the drivers at the start and the biggest competition was in Class N4 with a total of 25 entires. Some have entered the Estonian Championship, while others used this rally as preparation for future events. For example, Poland will feature their first winter rally and Polish crew Maciej Rzeznik/Przemyslaw Mazur (Škoda Fabia S2000) travelled to Estonia for the practice as the driver had never driven in winter conditions, whereas Martina Kangur/Kristo Kraag (Honda Civic Type R) used this rally as preparation for their foreign winter

campaigns, the Arctic Rally and WRC Rally Sweden. For any plans the crews had for this event, the rally was very exciting. Many suspected that it would be won by Georg Gross/Raigo Mõlder, the only crew in a WRC car, a Ford Focus WRC, but it was not to be this time. After SS2 they retired due to engine failure. This was unusual for a recently bought new car, and stages weren’t too demanding either... The next leaders of the rally were Sander Pärn/ Ken Järveoja (Subaru Impreza), but some three seconds behind them were the very experienced Priit Saluri/Indrk Lepp (Subaru Impreza), Kaspar Koitla/ Andres Ots (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX) and Latvians Jānis Vorobjovs/Guntars Zicāns (Mitsubishi Lancer Evo X). Kaspar Koitla progressed with every stage and climbed to the very top of leader board, and behind him Sander Pärn in very last stage overtook Jānis Vorobjovs to finish second overall. By the way, both these crews were last year’s juniors, competing respectively with a Honda Civic Type R and a Renault Clio Kaspar is 22 year old and Sander just 19. “It was a good surprise to lead and win this rally,” said Kaspar, and explained his change of cars: “I thought that I have nothing to do with 2WD car. I need faster car!”

Plans for rest of the season are not yet finalized, all depends on money, he points out. “For sure next rally is Tallina rally in the beginning of May, but also I want to take part some rallies in Latvia, Russia or Finland,” said Kaspar. Despite the fast, and for Estonia’s usually complicated stages, this rally saw only a few crashes and just one of them was serious: reigning Estonian Champion Margus Remmak rolled his heavily Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX in SS3. As a result the stage was cancelled, but only the car suffered as the crew was uninjured. H&H

OVERALL CLASSIFICATION 01) K. Koitla/A. Ots Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX - 56m 47,2s 02) S. Pärn/K. Järveoja Subaru Impreza WRX STi + 24,0s 03) J. Vorobjovs/G. Ziāans Mitsubishi Lancer Evo X + 25,8s 04) P. Saluri/I. Lepp Subaru Impreza WRX STi + 44,3s 05) V. Švedas/Ž. Sakalauskas Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX + 01m 12,6s 06) A. Pärs/S. Koskinen Subaru Impreza WRX STi + 01m 12,8s 07) D. Tagirov/A. Zavershinskaya Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX + 01m 29,7s 08) M. Kasepõld/R. Jõessar Subaru Impreza + 01m 34,9s 09) R. Murakas/K. Adler Mitsubishi Lancer Evo VII + 01m 43,1s 10) D. Butvilas/R. Vaitkevičius Mitsubishi Lancer Evo X + 01m 57,8s


Issue 166 • 20 Jan 2011

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DAY ONE REPORT: IRC MONTE CARLO RALLY Words: Staff Writer Pictures: IRC Series Juho Hanninen has completed the opening day of the centenary edition of Monte Carlo Rally, round one of the 2011 Intercontinental Rally Challenge (IRC), with a lead of 44,5sec. Driving a Skoda Motorsport Fabia S2000, the 29-year-old Finn was fastest on two of Wednesday’s four special stages to head Freddy Loix (Skoda Fabia S2000) at the overnight halt in Valence following a faultless drive. The stages in the Ardeche and Haute Loire regions of France were held in largely dry and bright conditions as the traditional ice and snow, that have been a feature of the event in recent years, didn’t materialise. Hanninen, the defending IRC champion, has been consistently upping his pace on asphalt since finishing second on this event last season. He

underlined that improvement with a staggering time on SS2, which was 15.1sec faster than any other driver could manage. Hanninen and co-driver Mikko Markkula also gained the upper hand with a series of inspired tyre choices for the dry, albeit chilly, weather. Le Mans 24 Hours racer Stephane Sarrazin had set the pace on the opening stage from Le Moulinon to Antraigues in his Peugeot France 207 S2000. However, his switch from a medium compound tyre to the softer version for the Burzet-St Martial stage did not suit the dry stage surface and he dropped back with a handling imbalance, before losing further ground on SS3, St Bonnet Le Froid, when his car’s intercom system failed and he couldn’t hear co-driver Jacques-Julien Renucci’s instructions for seven kilometres. Sarrazin’s delay enabled Loix to move into second. The Belgian Skoda driver would complete Day One with the fastest time on the second St Bonnet Le Froid stage (SS4). Loix, who holds the

record of IRC wins with a tally of six, admitted to making a slightly hesitant start but was otherwise satisfied with his performance. Former world rally champion Petter Solberg is third in another Peugeot after moving ahead of Sarrazin on SS4. The Norwegian said he was lucky to avoid a puncture when he slid wide on a right-hand bend on SS1 and nudged a wall. He also suggested his lack of dry-weather running in his 207 was masking his true speed. Guy Wilks, who was running first on the road, is fifth overnight after an encouraging, error-free start to his career with Peugeot UK. Jan Kopecky, runner-up in the IRC for the past two seasons, is sixth in the second factory Skoda, despite admitting to a lack of confidence behind wheel of his Fabia. The Czech had trailed French champion Bryan Bouffier (Peugeot 207 S2000) heading into SS4 but moved in front when Bouffier’s Peugeot developed a rear differential glitch, which left Bouffier


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with the feeling that his car was in frontwheel drive mode only. Francois Delecour is eighth in his privateer Peugeot 207 S2000. The French legend, who won Rallye MonteCarlo back in 1994, wasn’t satisfied with the handling of his car and is set to start Thursday’s stages with a revised set-up. “We tested in fog, rain and mud but we had none of those things today,” said Delecour. “But we are doing a very good job in a private car.” Bruno Magalhaes, who bemoaned a few incorrect tyre choices and fading brakes in the morning, was in the top 10 when he crashed his Peugeot Sport Portugal 207 S2000 into retirement on a sixth-gear corner on SS4. His misfortune elevated JeanSebastien Vigion (Peugeot 207 S2000) to ninth and M-Sport Ford Fiesta driver Julien Maurin to tenth. Under the revised point-scoring system for 2011, Maurin is now in contention for the final IRC drivers’ championship point. While the weather remained unseasonably mild, several drivers hit trouble on the demanding mountainous asphalt roads. First to fall was Andreas Mikkelsen, who was making his debut for Skoda UK Motorsport. The Norwegian driver’s challenge ended after four corners when he slid into a low wall on a

right-hand bend, punctured his car’s leftrear tyre and damaged the suspension to the extent he was unable to continue. Nicolas Vouilloz, tacking his first rally for 12 months, suffered a frontright puncture on SS1, as did Henning Solberg, who retired his M-Sport Fiesta as a result. Thierry Neuville crashed his Team Peugeot Belgium-Luxembourg 207 S2000 on SS1, which also claimed Australia’s Chris Atkinson, who retired his PROTON Satria Neo S2000 with an electrical failure 700 metres into the test. Atkinson’s PROTON team-mate P-G Andersson went no further than SS2 when he broke a wheel off his car hitting a rock seven kilometres into the stage. Toni Gardemeister lost more than three minutes with a puncture on SS3 and is 13th overnight in his Peugeot, one place ahead of ex-Grand Prix driver Alex Caffi, who is making his Rallye Monte-Carlo debut in a Skoda. Swiss Florian Gonon is the leading IRC Production Cup contender in his Subaru Impreza, one place ahead of Ralliart Mitsubishi Lancer driver Patrick Artru. Pierre Campana heads the IRC 2WD Cup battle ahead of fellow Clio driver Andrea Crugnola after defending champion Harry Hunt lost several minutes when he went off the road on

SS1.

Wednesday’s closing stage, St Bonnet Le Froid, was halted after Michel Boetti and Emmanuelle Nas de Tourris crashed their Peugeot 207. Boetti suffered a broken leg and was flown by helicopter to hospital in Lyon to undergo treatment. Nas de Tourris was uninjured. The stage was stopped after the first 29 cars had completed the run and the drivers behind received the time they recorded on the first pass through the repeated stage. H&H

Overall Classification AFTER DAY ONE: 01) J Hanninen/M. Markkula Skoda Fabia S2000 – 01h 11m 33.4s 02) F. Loix/F. Miclotte Skoda Fabia S2000 + 44,5s 03) P. Solberg/C. Patterson Peugeot 207 S2000 + 55,3s 04) S. Sarrazin/J-J. Renucci Peugeot 207 S2000 + 55,5s 05) G. Wilks/P. Pugh Peugeot 207 S2000 + 01m 18,7s 06) J. Kopecky/P. Stary Skoda Fabia S2000 + 01m 26,3s 07) B. Bouffier/X. Panseri Peugeot 207 S2000 + 01m 36,2s 08) F. Delecour/D. Savignoni Peugeot 207 S2000 + 01m 52,4s 09) J-S. Vigion/E. Yvernault Peugeot 207 S2000 + 03m 11,3s 10) J. Maurin/O. Urai M-Sport Ford Fiesta S2000 + 03m 53,2s


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