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Round 11 of the FIA World Rally Championship
4-7th October 2001
Extract from Official FIA Press Release
[WRC] Rallye San Remo: Panizzi Wins!
Sunday 7th October
Peugeot driver Gilles Panizzi has won the 11th round of the FIA World Rally Championship, the Sanremo Rally in northern Italy. The Frenchman, navigated by his brother Herve, finished more than ten seconds clear of Citroen's Sebastien Loeb after three days of intense competition in the mountains above the Mediterranean coast. Today's four stages were held in mixed conditions, with some drivers rating the final pair of tests - run in thick mist with standing water and soaking leaves on the road - as the hardest they'd faced all season. But although Panizzi allowed Loeb to eat into his 40-second overnight advantage, he matched his young rival's pace in the last stage to secure his third WRC rally win.
Panizzi's team-mate Didier Auriol claimed third on an all-French podium and since Citroen is not eligible for manufacturers points, Peugeot scored a maximum 16 points from the event to move into third in the makes' series. There was less movement in the drivers rankings, however, since title hopefuls Colin McRae and Tommi Mäkinen both failed to score points. The only real beneficiary was Carlos Sainz, whose drive to fourth overall inched him past Richard Burns and into third place in the title race.
Technical: The 206 WRCs of Gilles Panizzi and Didier Auriol have been reliable today. Marcus Grönholm was not so fortunate, however - the reigning world champion's car lost its power steering 10km into the opening stage, and he lost around two minutes as a result.
Sporting: Gilles Panizzi kept his concentration and didn't allow a rapidly-closing Sebastien Loeb to force him into a mistake during today's four stages. Overnight leader Panizzi admitted that he was perhaps too cautious in the penultimate stage, where Loeb scythed more than 20 seconds out of his advantage, but he increased his pace again for the last test and won the event by more than 10 seconds. With Loeb not registered for manufacturers' points, Didier Auriol had little to gain from chasing after the Citroen driver, so the 1994 world champion backed off to secure third overall and a maximum points haul for his team. Marcus Grönholm's hopes of even keeping Auriol in his sights this morning were destroyed when his 206 WRC's power steering failed on the first test of the day and he lost two minutes. The world champion recovered in the last pair of stages but he couldn't catch François Delecour and had to settle for seventh.
Quotes: Gilles Panizzi said: "It was really difficult today because the roads were in a very slippery condition and of course, I knew Sebastien would be closing on me. I was a bit too cautious in the stage before last but running first on the road wasn't easy. I was finding all of the slippery bits underneath the trees and on the leaves, and it would have been easy to slide off the road. I'm delighted with the result - it's good for me to win again and Didier's finish means it's a fantastic day for Peugeot. I can't wait for Corsica.
Didier Auriol said: "I've never seen stages like the ones this afternoon. I don't like fog normally but it was worse than ever - and the road surface was incredible. There were leaves, big puddles of water and even some chestnut shells that made it all very greasy. I'm just glad to get to the finish - it's no secret that this car, with the five-speed gearbox, wasn't exactly how I wanted it but it's been very reliable and it's clear that we're competitive.
Technical: The sole remaining Xsara WRC of Sebastien Loeb has been reliable today.
Sporting: Sebastien Loeb maintained his pace during today's four stages, but the Xsara's apparent strength on the longer test (25km) allowed him to eat into leader Gilles Panizzi's advantage. On the penultimate test, the runaway FIA Super 1600 Cup leader scalped more than 20 seconds from his rival to enter the last stage just 11.8 seconds adrift, but when Panizzi responded Loeb settled for second on his first world championship outing in the Xsara WRC. He must return to his 1600cc Saxo for the next event in Corsica, though.
Quotes: Sebastien Loeb said: "I wasn't really thinking of victory this morning - I was just trying to keep a good speed and not make any mistakes in the difficult conditions. That's all I've been trying to do all event, especially after Philippe (Bugalski) and Jesus (Puras) retired. It's obviously a fantastic result for me on my first world championship rally with the Xsara, but it's also a good result for everyone in the Super 1600 championship because it shows what can happen. I hope that I get another chance in this car soon so I can get more experience, because that was the most difficult thing for me.
Citroen Sport boss Guy Frequelin said: "What Sebastien has achieved here is exceptional. He started well enough but he seemed to get better as the rally went on. We all knew before the rally started that this was a good opportunity for Sebastien to show what he can do and I believe he's succeeded. We're also pleased that his car worked without any real problems - that's a good sign to the team that we're working in the right direction.
Technical: The Focus RS WRC01s of Carlos Sainz, François Delecour and Colin McRae have been reliable today.
Sporting: Carlos Sainz pushed hard in this morning's changeable conditions to quickly overhaul Italian privateer Renato Travaglia and move into fifth overall. It then became fourth when Marcus Grönholm's hopes were hit by power steering problems. Sainz fended off Travaglia during this afternoon's stages to hold his position to the finish and score three points in the world drivers' championship. He now moves into third in the series, seven points behind joint leaders Tommi Mäkinen and Colin McRae. McRae also put in a charge, passing Simon Jean-Joseph's privately-run Peugeot and then overhauling Petter Solberg's Subaru to score a potentially crucial extra manufacturers' point for Ford. His eighth overall did not bring him any drivers' series points, though. François Delecour was promoted to sixth by Grönholm's problems and the Frenchman set fastest time on the last stage of the rally to ensure that he held onto the last points placing.
Quotes: Carlos Sainz said: "If you'd said before the start of this rally that we'd end up scoring three points, we'd probably have doubted it, so we have to say we're reasonably pleased to take something away. We took a lot of risks today and it paid off - now we have to see how the package works in Corsica.
Colin McRae said: "This afternoon wasn't a good time to chase after places and points - in some places it was pretty dangerous. The fog on the penultimate stage was so bad that you couldn't even see where the water was running across the road. It obviously hasn't been that good a rally for us but once we got the differential problem sorted we were at least able to set respectable times. I don't know if that will be enough for us to stand `a chance of getting a point in Corsica, though.
Technical: The Impreza WRC2001s of Petter Solberg and Markko Martin were reliable today.
Sporting: Petter Solberg tried to keep hold of his overnight eighth place today but the charging Colin McRae sneaked past the Norwegian in this afternoon's tricky conditions so he had to settle for ninth. The result bagged two points for Subaru in the manufacturers' series, though. Team-mate Markko Martin crashed out heavily on the penultimate stage when his Impreza aqua-planed on a high-speed section, hit a wall and rolled.
Quotes: Petter Solberg said: "The final couple of stages were really difficult, with a lot of standing water and slippery leaves on the road. But I can take a lot of good experience from this rally and I'm encouraged at some of the times I've been able to set.
Markko Martin said: "When the car hit the wall it flipped upside down and from that point on we were just passengers. It's been a disappointing event for us so I'm going to forget it and start again in Corsica.
Technical: Tommi Mäkinen's Lancer Evolution WRC was basically reliable on this morning's first two stages but on the third test the Finn clipped a wall and ripped off the left-front wheel. Freddy Loix's Lancer was also reliable, although the Belgian was troubled by a badly steamed-up windscreen in the wet conditions this afternoon.
Sporting: Tommi Mäkinen continued to experiment with springs and damper settings this morning as he tried to rebuild confidence after a high-speed 'moment' on yesterday's final stage. But on today's third test, the Finn hit a patch of standing water and hit a wall, ripping off the left-front wheel and retiring on the spot. Freddy Loix tried different settings as well, and eventually finished in 12th.
Quotes: Tommi Makinen said: "It's been a difficult rally for us, because it's clear the car needs a lot more work in various areas. The accident was down to the conditions, because the fog meant that I couldn't really see the water on the road and we lost traction when we hit a stream of water. We have lots of things that we want to try for Corsica but there isn't much time before then.
Freddy Loix said: "We had a lot of water in the car for the last stages and the windscreen steamed up, so we backed up to make sure we reached the finish. We've learnt a lot and played around with the settings but I've been involved with a brand new rally car before and it always takes time to get the car up to speed
Technical: The Octavia WRC of Bruno Thiry was reliable today, apart from a slightly soft brake pedal towards the end of the first test. Roman Kresta retired his example on the last stage with engine problems, though. Octavia just outside the top ten, and the Belgian eventually finished 13th. Team-mate Roman Kresta's debut run in a works World Rally Car ended on the last stage with engine problems.
Quotes: Bruno Thiry said: "The car's been basically reliable and we've found some good settings, but it's clear we need a bit more performance yet. Corsica will be difficult but we are making some progress.
Technical: Alister McRae retired late yesterday afternoon, when a soft brake pedal meant it would have been unsafe for him to tackle the day's final stage.
In the FIA Super 1600 Cup section, local driver Andrea Dallavilla ntinued his dominance to claim the category spoils in his Fiat Punto. The Italian eventually finished more than four minutes clear of François Duval's Ford Puma, with Larry Cols's Peugeot 206 in third.
Two privateer crews scored top-ten finishes in the overall classification - Renato Travaglia benefited from Marcus Grönholm's problems to finish fifth in his 206 WRC, while Simon Jean-Joseph's similar machine arrived back in Sanremo in 10th. The FIA Teams Cup section was dominated by Henrik Lundgaard and the reigning European champion eventually finished 15th overall.
Alex Fiorio claimed victory in the Group N category for more standard machinery, but second in the class was more than enough for Argentina Gabriel Pozzo to mathematically secure his victory in the FIA World Cup for Drivers of Production Cars.
UNOFFICIAL FINAL RESULTS
1 Panizzi Peugeot 206 WRC 4:05:49,5
2 Loeb Citroen Xsara WRC 4:06:00,9
3 Auriol Peugeot 206 WRC 4:06:44,4
4 Sainz Ford Focus WRC 4:07:01,4
5 Travaglia Peugeot 206 WRC 4:07:21,6
6 Delecour Peugeot 206 WRC 4:08:18,1
7 Gronholm Peugeot 206 WRC 4:08:36,8
8 McRae Ford Focus RS WRC 4:09:43,2
9 Solberg Subaru Impreza WRC 4:09:49,4
10 Jean-Joseph Pegueot 206 WRC 4:09:51,0
1 Fiorio Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 4:28:20,3
2 Pozzo Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 4:33:29,0
3 De Dominicis Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 4:35:39,0
1 Dallavilla Fiat Punto 4:24:14,8
2 Robert Peugeot 206 4:28:42,1
3 Cols Peugeot 206 4:29:28,9
1 Lungaard Toyota Corolla WRC 4:14:44,2
2 Papadimitriou Subaru Impreza WRC 4:34:39,1
3 Blomqvist Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 4:46:13,0
CHAMPIONSHIP POINTS (after 11 of 14 rounds)
FIA World Rally Championship for Drivers:
Mäkinen (FIN) 40
McRae (GB) 40
Sainz (E) 33
Burns (GB) 31
Rovanperä (FIN) 27
Grönholm (FIN) 16
Panizzi (F) 16
Delecour (F) 15
Auriol (F) 15
Solberg (N) 9
Loix (B) 9
FIA World Rally Championship for Manufacturers:
FIA World Cup for Drivers of Production Cars:
Pozzo (RA) 65
Trelles (ROU) 26
Ligato (RA) 22
Stohl (A) 22
Blomqvist (S) 14
FIA Teams Cup (after 5 of 6 rounds):
Lundgaard (DK) 30
Hagstrom (FIN) 20
Bakhashab (SA) 15
Papadimitriou (GR) 14
Blomqvist (S) 10
FIA Super 1600 Cup (after 4 of 6 rounds):
Loeb (F) 30
Dallavilla (I) 24
Stenshorne (N) 7
Cols (B) 7
Basso (I) 6
Fontana (I) 6
Duval (F) 6
SS13 - Loeb, SS14 - Sainz, SS15 - Loeb, SS16 - Delecour
SS15 Makinen Mitsubishi Lancer WRC Lost Wheel
SS15 Martin Subaru Impreza WRC Accident
SS15 Trelles Mitsubishi Lancer Evo Accident
SS12 McRae Hyundai Accent WRC Brake Failure
SS8 Bugalski Citroen Xsara WRC Accident
SS7b Puras Citroen Xsara WRC Accident
SS7 Arai Subaru Impreza WRC Lost wheel
SS1 Burns Subaru Impreza WRC Off road
SS1 Liatti Hyundai Accent WRC Off road
SS1 Schwarz Skoda Octavia WRC Alternator
SS 13, San Romolo 1 28.64km 1st Car: 08:32
1 Loeb Citroen Xsara WRC 19:04,7
2 Travaglia Peugeot 206 WRC 19:06,2
3 Auriol Peugeot 206 WRC 19:10,3
4 Panizzi Peugeot 206 WRC 19:12,4
5 Makinen Mitsubishi Lancer WRC 19:15,6
SS 14, Colle d'Oggia 1 15.19km 1st Car: 09:45
1 Sainz Ford Focus WRC 10:04,3
2 Panizzi Peugeot 206 WRC 10:04,9
3 Martin Subaru Impreza WRC 10:05,3
4 Loeb Citroen Xsara WRC 10:11,6
5 Travaglia Peugeot 206 WRC 10:15,5
SS 15, San Romolo 2 28.64km 1st Car: 12:33
1 Loeb Citroen Xsara WRC 20:20,6
2 Sainz Ford Focus WRC 20:21,1
3 Gronholm Peugeot 206 WRC 20:27,4
4 Travaglia Peugeot 206 WRC 20:30,7
5 Auriol Peugeot 206 WRC 20:35,7
SS 16, Colle d'Oggia 2 15.19km 1st Car: 13:46
1 Delecour Peugeot 206 WRC 10:13,0
2 McRae Ford Focus RS WRC 10:13,4
3 Jean-Joseph Pegueot 206 WRC 10:20,3
4 Thiry Skoda Octavia WRC 10:20,4
5 Sainz Ford Focus WRC 10:20,5
[WRC] Rallye San Remo: End of Leg 2
Saturday 6th October
Peugeot driver Gilles Panizzi holds a relatively comfortable lead on the 11th round of the FIA World Rally Championship, the Sanremo Rally, which continued in northern Italy today. The Frenchman inherited the top position when overnight leader Jesus Puras crashed his Citroen Xsara on today's second special stage, and he then built a lead of more than 40 seconds. The second Xsara of Philippe Bugalski also crashed and then retired with fuel pump problems shortly after Puras but the third car, driven by FIA Super 1600 Cup leader Sebastien Loeb, has moved into second place ahead of Peugeot's Didier Auriol.
Championship challengers Colin McRae and Tommi Mäkinen have endured another long day, however. Both have been marginally happier with their cars after yesterday's problems were slowly solved, but it now seems unlikely that either will add to their points tally in the drivers' series.
Technical: Didier Auriol's 206 WRC has been reliable today, but the cars of Gilles Panizzi and Marcus Grönholm have been hit by occasional gearbox glitches. Panizzi lost the downshift on his steering wheel 'paddle' on today's fifth stage and had to resort to the manual stick, while Grönholm's 'box started to upshift of its own accord in the same stage. The Finn also had to cope with bent suspension after he clouted a wall in SS7bis.
Sporting: Gilles Panizzi lost a few seconds to overnight leader Jesus Puras on today's first stage but in the second, it became academic when the Spaniard crashed out. When Philippe Bugalski retired as well, Panizzi was handed a comfortable cushion and he matched his rivals' pace thereafter. The retirements of the Citroens promoted Didier Auriol to third, then second as he swapped seconds - and places - with Sebastien Loeb. The 1994 world champion eventually had to settle for third overnight. Marcus Grönholm lost time when he smashed his car off a wall on today's second stage, but the reigning world champion quickly recovered and moved back past Carlos Sainz into fourth.
Quotes: Gilles Panizzi said: "It definitely got easier when Philippe and Jesus retired, but I still have to keep my concentration. Running first on the stages can sometimes be difficult because I find the patches of loose gravel on the outside of corners. There's no doubt that the car is working very well, although I think perhaps the Citroen is a little easier on its tyres so it's better in the long stages. Tomorrow's a short day but lots could still happen, so I have to concentrate.
Didier Auriol said: "I've been pushing hard and attacking, of course, but I haven't been taking stupid risks because in the end, Sebastien isn't registered for manufacturers' points. It's turning into a good fight, though!"
Technical: Philippe Bugalski's Xsara WRC retired on today's third stage when its fuel pump malfunctioned and the engine was left with zero fuel pressure. Jesus Puras's example had to retire with suspension damage on the day's second stage. But Sebastien Loeb's example has been reliable.
Sporting: Jesus Puras extended his overnight lead by a second on today's first stage, but the Spaniard then threw away his advantage when he crashed out on the next stage. Philippe Bugalski was less than pleased with his car's handling on the first couple of stages (he spun and lost around 45 seconds in SS7bis) but then the Frenchman was forced to retire with a broken fuel pump in SS8. Sebastien Loeb benefited from his team-mates' retirements but the FIA Super 1600 Cup leader set his first ever fastest time in the world championship to move into second overall in SS7bis. Thereafter, he and Didier Auriol swapped seconds but the younger charger gained upper hand by the late afternoon to hold second overnight.
Quotes: Jesus Puras said: "I was too quickly into the corner and we hit a wall, breaking the suspension. We just couldn't go on. I'm disappointed, of course, but these things sometimes happen when you're trying to win a rally against such good drivers and good cars. At least we've shown again that we can be competitive and I'll be back to aim for a victory again in Corsica.
Philippe Bugalski said: "I spun in SS7bis and broke the front bumper, and then I lost time because I had to reverse back and forth to get back onto the stage. Then on the next stage the engine died because of no fuel pressure. It's hard for me and the team but that's life sometimes.
Sebastien Loeb said: "It's been a very good day for me. I'm delighted to get my first scratch times, of course, but it's also good that we've kept Marcus, Carlos and the rest behind us and put Didier under so much pressure. I hope I can continue this tomorrow and get a good finish for me and the team, so I'm pushing but not taking big risks.
Technical: Ford engineers took until today's second service to finally cure Colin McRae's differential problems. The other Focus WRCs of Carlos Sainz and Francois Delecour have been reliable.
Sporting: Punctures cost Carlos Sainz valuable seconds today as the Spaniard tried to fight with Marcus Grönholm, team-mate François Delecour, Renato Travaglia and Petter Solberg. He still held a points placing as he returned to Sanremo, though. Delecour lost time with tyre problems and then stalled on the line in SS9. He dropped behind Travaglia and Solberg as a result, although the Norwegian's last-stage problems brought Delecour back to seventh. McRae inched into the top ten once his transmission problems were cured, but the Scot now only has very faint chances of bagging a drivers' point. A puncture on today's fifth stage didn't help his cause either.
Quotes: Carlos Sainz said: "We've had some bad luck with punctures today but when the stage has lots of corners where you cut it's always a possibility. I don't know what more we can achieve here - we'll just keep trying, see if we can stay ahead of the guys we've been fighting with and maybe take some points from here.
Colin McRae said: "We're not sure what solved the transmission problem but the team changed electronic and mechanical parts. But it's really too late for us - all we can do is push for manufacturers' points - any hopes of a drivers' point went out of the window yesterday. All we can hope to do is keep Tommi behind us.
Technical: Toshihiro Arai retired from the event on today's first stage when his left-front wheel sheered its nuts and left the Japanese driver stranded. Markko Martin inflicted rear suspension damage on his Impreza on the next test, while Petter Solberg knocked his right rear lateral suspension link out of line on the day's last stage.
Sporting: Petter Solberg set his first fastest time on asphalt today as he began to put pressure on Renato Travaglia, François Delecour and Carlos Sainz. But the young Norwegian's hopes took a knock on the last stage, when he hit a rock and damaged his right-rear suspension. Markko Martin had already dented his chances on the day's second stage by hitting a wall and badly damaging his rear suspension He lost more than three minutes as a result. Toshihiro Arai, meanwhile, was forced to retire on the day's opening stage when his Impreza lost its left-front wheel.
Quotes: Petter Solberg said: "We had a lot of front tyre wear in the long stage so we swapped them to the rears for the last test. But about two kilometres into SS12, we slid wide and hit a rock. It damaged the lateral link at the right rear. It's a shame it happened because we'd set some really good times today.
Markko Martin said: "The accident was my fault. I think I had marked the braking point too late in my pacenotes because by the time I'd hit the brakes, the car was flying over a bump. After that I just seem to have lost some of the speed I had yesterday.
Technical: Ralliart has managed to solve the transmission problems that blighted the Lancer WRC's first day of competition yesterday, so Freddy Loix and Tommi Mäkinen have been able to experiment with set-ups today. Mäkinen did complain of further glitches in the rear differential in today's second loop of stages, though.
Sporting: Despite several retirements, both Mitsubishis still lie outside the top ten as both Tommi Mäkinen and Freddy Loix finally start to experiment with set-ups on their new cars. Mäkinen felt that the front end of his Lancer WRC was rolling too much in long corners, causing understeer, while Freddy Loix's pace varied depending on how good a solution he found in his latest batch of suspension settings. Mäkinen arrived back in Sanremo in 11th, Loix in 13th.
Quotes: Tommi Makinen said: "It's clear that we still have a lot of work to do and I'm not sure how much can be done before Corsica, because even when the transmission's working we are needing more speed. The handling hasn't really been perfect here - we're both getting too much understeer.
Technical: The Octavia WRCs of Bruno Thiry and Roman Kresta have been reliable today.
Sporting: Bruno Thiry has experimented with damper and spring settings, and the Belgian is now more confident with his Octavia over the bumpier Italian roads than when the rally started. He still lies outside the top ten, along with his team-mate Roman Kresta. The Czech driver continues to enjoy his experience-building run.
Quotes: Bruno Thiry said: "Before, the car was bouncing all over the place on bumps and it felt very nervous. I'd no confidence with it. Now I'm much happier - we've really found some improvements in set-ups during this rally. I'm not sure they'll be useful in Corsica in two weeks, though, because that's a completely different type of asphalt.
Technical: The sole remaining Accent WRC2 of Alister McRae has been reliable today.
Sporting: Alister McRae has little or no chance of a top ten finish after he lost minutes beached in a stage yesterday evening, but t he Scot teamed up with the Hyundai engineers to experiment with suspension settings today.
Quotes: Alister McRae said: "We're going around in circles a bit today. There's no hope of even a point but we've played with springs and dampers a lot. We haven't got any development parts to try, though, so we're really going through the motions. It's frustrating because we can't really expect much more from the car in Corsica either.
Two non-manufacturer World Rally Cars have moved inside the top ten today. The Peugeot 206 WRC of Renato Travaglia challenged Carlos Sainz for fifth this afternoon (the Italian ended the day in sixth), and Simon Jean-Joseph's 206 fended off Colin McRae to hold ninth, just five seconds behind Petter Solberg.
Andrea Dallavilla continues to lead the FIA Super 1600 Cup section in his Fiat Punto, although the 'feeder' category crews missed a couple of stages thanks to a rally-delaying accident for Daniel Carlsson's Toyota Corolla. Cedric Robert overcame an engine misfire to be the Italian's nearest challenger in the 1600cc class, ahead of Giandomenico Basso.
Henrik Lundgaard still holds a commanding advantage in the FIA Teams Cup section, ahead of title rival Pasi Hagstrom (who's tackling his first asphalt event). Alex Fioro, meanwhile, has extended his lead in the Group N category for more standard machinery, but third placed Gabriel Pozzo remains on course to lift the Group N world title
END OF LEG 2
1 Panizzi Peugeot 206 WRC 3:05:22,8
2 Loeb Citroen Xsara WRC 3:05:57,3
3 Auriol Peugeot 206 WRC 3:06:04,6
4 Gronholm Peugeot 206 WRC 3:06:33,3
5 Sainz Ford Focus WRC 3:06:59,2
6 Travaglia Peugeot 206 WRC 3:07:03,6
7 Delecour Peugeot 206 WRC 3:07:32,6
8 Solberg Subaru Impreza WRC 3:08:16,1
9 Jean-Joseph Pegueot 206 WRC 3:08:21,5
10 McRae Ford Focus RS WRC 3:08:49,8
1 Fiorio Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 3:22:15,8
2 Trelles Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 3:22:39,0
3 Pozzo Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 3:24:52,6
1 Dallavilla Fiat Punto 3:18:55,8
2 Robert Peugeot 206 3:19:13,5
3 Basso Fiat Punto 3:22:09,0
1 Lungaard Toyota Corolla WRC 3:11:59,6
2 Hagstrom Toyota Corolla WRC 3:15:45,6
3 Papadimitriou Subaru Impreza WRC 3:26:42,5
SS7 - Puras, SS7b - Loeb, SS8 - Auriol, SS9 - Solberg, SS10 - Panizzi, SS11 - Auriol, SS11b - Loeb, SS12 - Panizzi
SS12 McRae Hyundai Accent WRC Brake Failure
SS8 Bugalski Citroen Xsara WRC Accident/Fuel Pressure
SS7b Puras Citroen Xsara WRC Accident
SS7 Arai Subaru Impreza WRC Lost wheel
SS1 Burns Subaru Impreza WRC Off road
SS1 Liatti Hyundai Accent WRC Off road
SS1 Schwarz Skoda Octavia WRC Alternator
SS 7, Passo Teglia 1 14.32km 1st Car: 08:07
1 Puras Citroen Xsara WRC 10:25,6
2 Panizzi Peugeot 206 WRC 10:26,8
3 Gronholm Peugeot 206 WRC 10:28,7
4 Travaglia Peugeot 206 WRC 10:28,9
5 Bugalski Citroen Xsara WRC 10:29,7
SS 7b, Molini 1 25.29km 1st Car: 08:32
1 Loeb Citroen Xsara WRC 16:52,6
2 Panizzi Peugeot 206 WRC 16:55,1
3 Delecour Peugeot 206 WRC 16:59,0
4 Solberg Subaru Impreza WRC 17:00,7
5 Auriol Peugeot 206 WRC 17:01,1
SS 8, Perinaldo 1 12.16km 1st Car: 09:35
1 Auriol Peugeot 206 WRC 7:43,9
2 Panizzi Peugeot 206 WRC 7:44,6
3 Solberg Subaru Impreza WRC 7:45,6
4 Travaglia Peugeot 206 WRC 7:47,8
5 Loeb Citroen Xsara WRC 7:48,6
SS 9, San Bernardo 2 19.44km 1st Car: 11:52
1 Solberg Subaru Impreza WRC 11:35,8
2 Gronholm Peugeot 206 WRC 11:35,9
3 Panizzi Peugeot 206 WRC 11:36,8
4 Loeb Citroen Xsara WRC 11:36,9
5 Travaglia Peugeot 206 WRC 11:39,2
SS 10, Nava 2 19.03km 1st Car: 12:47
1 Panizzi Peugeot 206 WRC 11:58,0
2 Gronholm Peugeot 206 WRC 11:59,4
3 Loeb Citroen Xsara WRC 12:01,5
4 Auriol Peugeot 206 WRC 12:02,1
5 Travaglia Peugeot 206 WRC 12:02,2
SS 11, Passo Teglia 2 14.32km 1st Car: 15:35
1 Auriol Peugeot 206 WRC 10:23,0
2 Travaglia Peugeot 206 WRC 10:23,2
3 Panizzi Peugeot 206 WRC 10:23,4
4 Loeb Citroen Xsara WRC 10:26,6
5 Gronholm Peugeot 206 WRC 10:27,1
SS 11b, Molini 2 25.29km 1st Car: 16:00
1 Loeb Citroen Xsara WRC 16:43,7
2 Gronholm Peugeot 206 WRC 16:51,4
3 Auriol Peugeot 206 WRC 16:52,3
4 Solberg Subaru Impreza WRC 16:53,3
5 Panizzi Peugeot 206 WRC 16:53,6
SS 12, Perinaldo 2 12.16km 1st Car: 17:03
1 Panizzi Peugeot 206 WRC 7:41,6
2 Auriol Peugeot 206 WRC 7:42,7
3 Loeb Citroen Xsara WRC 7:43,1
4 Gronholm Peugeot 206 WRC 7:43,7
5 Sainz Ford Focus WRC 7:45,3
[WRC] Rallye San Remo: End of Leg 1
Friday, 5th October 2001
French manufacturers have dominated the opening day of the 11th round of the FIA World Rally Championship, the Sanremo Rally. Peugeot and Citroen drivers scored fastest times on all of the eight stages held today in the mountains north of the Italian coastal resort, with Xsara WRC driver Jesus Puras eventually emerging as the narrow leader.
The three leading contenders for the drivers' title have suffered badly today, though. Richard Burns (winner of the last round in New Zealand) crashed out less than five kilometres into the day's first stage, while Tommi Mäkinen has been hampered by transmission problems on the first appearance of his Mitsubishi Lancer World Rally Car. Colin McRae, meanwhile, suffered from electronic problems that affected his car's handling.
Technical: The three Xsara WRCs, driven by Philippe Bugalski, Jesus Puras and Sebastien Loeb, have been reliable today.
Sporting: Philippe Bugalski dented his chances of victory - and several panels on his Xsara WRC - when he spun into a big rock on the day's first stage. He found the gearbox jammed between two gears when the car came to rest, and lost valuable time resetting the transmission. He recovered quickly thereafter, though and had moved back into the points by early afternoon. Team-mate Jesus Puras made no such errors, though, and the Spaniard led for much of the day. A slow time on the day's fifth stage - caused by 'over-cautious' pacenotes - dropped him behind Gilles Panizzi into second, but he fought back to hold a narrow lead overnight. The third Xsara WRC driver Sebastien Loeb has acclimatised quickly on his first world championship outing in the car. The runaway leader of this year's FIA Super 1600 Cup held eighth after the first stage and then moved into the points, despite complaining of excessive oversteer in the first loop of stages.
Quotes: Jesus Puras said: ăIt's been going very well. The car feels good and apart from the stage where I my pacenotes were too cautious, I've been happy with my driving. I had a small vibration in the day's third stage which I suspect was an ATS mousse insert that we'd hit on the previous test, but it wasn't a big deal. I'm enjoying the fight.
Philippe Bugalski said: ăI'm quite pleased, although obviously the spin on the first stage was annoying. I thought the car was just going to spin but it hit the big rock and that threw it around, so the front spoiler got damaged too. After that I could feel the front of the car going light in the faster sections! In SS3 I tried too hard and lost time going sideways, but in SS4 I was neat and set fastest time. There's still a long way to go, so I'm going to keep pushing
Technical: The 206 WRCs driven by Gilles Panizzi and Didier Auriol have been reliable today, but Marcus Grönholm lost time in the day's last two tests when his steering wheel gear paddle refused to downshift.
Sporting: Gilles Panizzi set fastest time on today's first stage but last year's winner felt that the initial settings on his 206 WRC were taking him too close to his own limits too often. He dropped to second, but then reverted back to a previous set-up at the following service. Thereafter, he pronounced himself happier as he inched ahead of Jesus Puras to reclaim the lead. Team-mate Marcus Grönholm has occasionally eclipsed the French asphalt ace, as the reigning world champion built up further confidence on asphalt. The Finn set top-three times for much of the day to hold third overall, before late gearbox problems dropped him to sixth. The remaining 206 WRC of Didier Auriol occupied fourth, although the 1994 world champion maintained that he would have preferred Peugeot's six-speed gearbox instead of the five-speed unit fitted to his car.
Quotes: Gilles Panizzi said: ăI'm much happier with the car now. This morning it was quite difficult to drive and I found myself at my limit a lot of the time, especially under braking. Now the setting is much easier for me - perfect, really. It's turning into a good fight between me, Jesus and even Marcus. I'm not surprised at Marcus's times - he's been getting quicker on every asphalt rally he does.
Marcus Grönholm said: ăI've been getting more confident with every stage. At the start I was holding my foot on the brake pedal too much and the brakes actually started to fade near the end of the day's longest stage. I got better after that, and it's nice to beat Gilles occasionally! I don't know if I have a chance to win this rally but we're still in there and still fighting!
Technical: The three Focus RS WRC01s of Carlos Sainz and Francois Delecour have been reliable today, but Colin McRae's example has suffered from an intermittent electrical glitch that has caused the differentials to malfunction.
Sporting: Ford had expected a hard fight against the French manufacturers and the prediction as proved correct, for while Carlos Sainz has generally been the fastest non-Peugeot/Citroen today, the Spaniard could manage no better than seventh overall by the end of the day. Team-mate François Delecour swapped seconds with the double world champion and held eighth, but transmission problems slowed Colin McRae and the Scot languished outside the top ten, more than half a minute behind his team-mates.
Quotes: Colin McRae said: ăThe differential problem's been annoying because we should at least be able to set the same times as Carlos and François, and we haven't. It's clear that the performance has improved since Catalunya but probably not enough. This isn't doing my championship chances much good.
Carlos Sainz said: ăWe've made improvements since Catalunya but it's not enough - we knew that before we came here. I'm fairly happy with the way that the car is handling. It feels fast, but the times don't quite match that. I'm not even sure now, though, how we can make it go any quicker.
Technical: Richard Burns damaged a wheel and suspension on his Impreza WRC2001 as he crashed out of the event on the day's first stage. Petter Solberg's example occasionally lapsed into its gearbox's 'safe mode', which greatly lengthened the amount of time needed to change gear. Markko Martin's and Toshihiro Arai's cars have been reliable.
Sporting: Richard Burns was the first retirement of the event after the Englishman slid off the road on a tightening left-hand corner barely four kilometres into the day's first stage. His Impreza slid down a sheer drop and couldn't be recovered in time for him to continue. Petter Solberg was hit by gearbox glitches but the young Norwegian was still satisfied to keep Francois Delecour and Carlos Sainz in his sights from ninth overall. His team-mate Markko Martin held tenth despite early power steering problems. Toshihiro Arai clipped a rock in the day's third test but has performed steadily otherwise. The Japanese driver was outside the top 20, however.
Quotes: Petter Solberg said: ăI've had a few problems with the gearbox and some bad understeer but generally I'm happy. I'm really encouraged to be so near the good guys on asphalt like François (Delecour).
Richard Burns said: ăI still don't really know what happened. We slid into a corner as usual but we didn't regain the grip mid-corner like we normally do and it just dropped down a bank. There was no way we could get back on the road. In terms of the championship, Tommi (Mäkinen) and Colin (McRae) don't seem to be doing so well at the moment so hopefully the other guys can keep them out of the points.
Technical: The Lancer Evo WRC has hit transmission problems on its first day of world championship competition. Tommi Mäkinen's and Freddy Loix's machines have both struggled with a lack of differential locking, although Ralliart subsequently 'locked' the Belgian's set-up in an attempt to at least find baseline for comparison.
Sporting: Transmission problems hampered Tommi Mäkinen and Freddy Loix today, and neither was able to get near the top ten as a result. Ralliart engineers were still fighting to pinpoint and cure the problem at this evening's final service.
Quotes: Tommi Makinen said: ăIt's very frustrating. We've lost too much time already, really. The bad thing is that unless we can find a clean run, we still don't know how competitive the car is against the others.
Freddy Loix said: ăIt's been difficult to stay on the road at times, but we have to keep trying if we're going to find out the problem before Corsica. We had a pretty clean run over the last loop of stages but understeer was a big problem, so we have to investigate that now as well.
Technical: Armin Schwarz's Octavia WRC retired at the end of the first stage with alternator problems. Bruno Thiry's car hit occasional differential glitches on this morning's first loop that caused massive understeer, particularly on SS2bis. Roman Kresta's car has been reliable, although the Czech driver damaged it by hitting a wall on the same test.
Sporting: The big Octavia WRCs have struggled to stave off hordes of privateer Imprezas, 206 WRCs and Corollas today. Armin Schwarz didn't get a chance, thanks to early alternator failure, but Bruno Thiry fought gamely despite dissatisfaction with his transmission and initial tyre choice. He was struggling to stay in the top 20, however. Roman Kresta built experience of the Sanremo roads (and further knowledge of the Octavia) but he fell behind plenty of privateer crews in the process.
Quotes: Bruno Thiry said: ăThe car handling isn't bad now, once we fixed the differential glitches this morning and I moved onto a different type of tyre. But it's clear that we're going to have to fight hard to get near the top ten and manufacturers' points.
Technical: Piero Liatti hit power steering difficulties on today's first stage, then crashed out around a kilometre before the finish of the test. Alister McRae's Accent WRC2 has been generally reliable, although the Scot damaged it in his SS6 accident.
Sporting: With little development on asphalt since Catalunya, Alister McRae always knew he faced an uphill struggle to hold a top ten placing in Italy and that has proven the case today. But the Scot's cause wasn't helped when he clipped the front and rear wheels, then beached the car in an accident in SS6. It took five minutes before enough spectators were present to return the Accent to the stage.
Quotes: Alister McRae said: ăWe knew it would be hard work and that's how it's turned out. We just have to hope that a lot of the guys in front hit trouble tomorrow.
In the FIA Super 1600 Cup, Andrea Dallavilla has dominated the timesheets in his Fiat Punto, despite being less than totally satisfied with his car's set-up. Others have hit problems - Giandomenico Basso broke a gearbox mounting, Patrick Magaud suffered a puncture and then slid off the road as a result, and Niall McShea damaged the right-rear of his car on a SS2bis corner that caught out several. The FIA Teams Cup section for private crews has been controlled by reigning European Champion Henrik Lundgaard, although the Dane's run hasn't been entirely troublefree. He punctured in SS1 and then broke a wheel rim in SS3. His title rival Pasi Hagstrom has been unable to fight back, as he's still learning how to drive a World Rally Car on asphalt on this, his first outing on the surface.
Meanwhile, local driver Alex Fiorio has dominated the timesheets in the Group N category for more standard cars. But category world title hopeful Gabriel Pozzo is still in contention for points, despite mild brake problems this morning.
END OF LEG 1
1 Panizzi Peugeot 206 WRC 1:31:41,4
2 Puras Citroen Xsara WRC 1:31:42,9
3 Bugalski Citroen Xsara WRC 1:31:57,5
4 Auriol Peugeot 206 WRC 1:32:08,0
5 Loeb Citroen Xsara WRC 1:32:12,8
6 Gronholm Peugeot 206 WRC 1:32:18,1
7 Sainz Ford Focus WRC 1:32:32,1
8 Delecour Peugeot 206 WRC 1:32:50,6
9 Travaglia Peugeot 206 WRC 1:32:53,1
10 Solberg Subaru Impreza WRC 1:32:55,1
1 Trelles Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 1:41:33,0
2 Ligato Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 1:41:44,6
3 Stagni Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 1:41:45,4
1 Dallavilla Fiat Punto 1:39:08,9
2 Robert Peugeot 206 1:39:20,3
3 Basso Fiat Punto 1:40:34,8
1 Lungaard Toyota Corolla WRC 1:35:02,2
2 Hagstrom Toyota Corolla WRC 1:37:11,1
3 Blomqvist Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 1:44:19,1
SS1 - Panizzi, SS2 - Puras, SS2b - Panizzi, SS3 - Puras, SS4 - Bugalski, SS5 - Bugalski, SS6 - Puras, SS6b - Bugalski
SS1 Burns Subaru Impreza WRC Off road
SS1 Liatti Hyundai Accent WRC Off road
SS1 Schwarz Skoda Octavia WRC Alternator
SS 1, Coldirodi 1 12.41km 1st Car: 08:24
1 Panizzi Peugeot 206 WRC 7:55,7
2 Gronholm Peugeot 206 WRC 7:57,3
3 Sainz Ford Focus WRC 7:58,0
4 Puras Citroen Xsara WRC 7:58,2
5 Auriol Peugeot 206 WRC 8:01,6
SS 2, Langan 1 25.29km 1st Car: 09:12
1 Puras Citroen Xsara WRC 16:48,2
2 Bugalski Citroen Xsara WRC 16:49,7
3 Panizzi Peugeot 206 WRC 16:56,6
4 Gronholm Peugeot 206 WRC 16:59,0
5 Loeb Citroen Xsara WRC 16:59,8
SS 2b, Rezzo 1 12.29km 1st Car: 09:51
1 Panizzi Peugeot 206 WRC 9:12,4
2 Gronholm Peugeot 206 WRC 9:14,2
3 Auriol Peugeot 206 WRC 9:14,5
4 Bugalski Citroen Xsara WRC 9:15,7
5 Puras Citroen Xsara WRC 9:16,4
SS 3, San Bernardo 1 19.44km 1st Car: 11:50
1 Puras Citroen Xsara WRC 11:34,8
2 Panizzi Peugeot 206 WRC 11:36,8
3 Bugalski Citroen Xsara WRC 11:37,7
4 Auriol Peugeot 206 WRC 11:40,4
5 Loeb Citroen Xsara WRC 11:41,0
SS 4, Nava 1 19.03km 1st Car: 12:45
1 Bugalski Citroen Xsara WRC 12:00,5
3 Panizzi Peugeot 206 WRC 12:03,6
4 Loeb Citroen Xsara WRC 12:06,0
5 Auriol Peugeot 206 WRC 12:07,0
SS 5, Coldirodi 2 12.41km 1st Car: 15:50
1 Bugalski Citroen Xsara WRC 7:53,5
2 Panizzi Peugeot 206 WRC 7:53,6
3 Solberg Subaru Impreza WRC 7:57,1
4 Puras Citroen Xsara WRC 7:57,3
5 Auriol Peugeot 206 WRC 7:57,9
SS 6, Langan 2 25.29km 1st Car: 16:38
1 Puras Citroen Xsara WRC 16:41,9
2 Bugalski Citroen Xsara WRC 16:46,1
3 Panizzi Peugeot 206 WRC 16:47,5
4 Loeb Citroen Xsara WRC 16:47,9
5 Auriol Peugeot 206 WRC 16:48,8
SS 6b, Rezzo 2 12.29km 1st Car: 17:17
1 Bugalski Citroen Xsara WRC 9:11,2
2 Panizzi Peugeot 206 WRC 9:16,1
3 Puras Citroen Xsara WRC 9:16,6
4 Auriol Peugeot 206 WRC 9:17,1
4 Loeb Citroen Xsara WRC 9:17,1
[WRC] Rallye San Remo: Welcome
Thursday 4th October
FIA World Rally Championship leader Tommi Mäkinen must rely on an unknown quantity as he aims to get his title bid back on track on the 11th round of the series, the Sanremo Rally, which starts in northern Italy tomorrow. The Finn has failed to score on his last two outings, allowing Ford's Colin McRae to draw level on points. And although Mäkinen has won on the Sanremo asphalt before (in 1999), his chances will depend on the performance and reliability of a brand new Mitsubishi Lancer World Rally Car, which makes its debut in Italy.
Mäkinen, McRae and other title hopefuls Carlos Sainz (Ford) and Richard Burns (Subaru) face stiff opposition from a host of asphalt experts, including last year's winner Gilles Panizzi (Peugeot) and the Citroens of Philippe Bugalski, Jesus Puras and Sebastien Loeb.
FORD (1st - 76 points)
Technical: Ford introduces a number of small revisions to the Focus RS WRC01 for this event. In particular, the three factory cars will all be fitted with a modified camshaft and further engine tweaks, designed to improve top-end power. The cars' suspension geometry has also been changed after considerable testing and discussions with tyre supplier Pirelli.
Sporting: Carlos Sainz and Colin McRae are nominated for manufacturers' points, with Francois Delecour eligible for drivers' points only.
Quotes: Colin McRae said: "We've made progress with Pirelli since Catalunya in April but I'm not sure if it's enough. Until we get a few stages under our belt we won't know how much everyone else has improved. I'm sure they haven't been standing still. If we get some rain here it'll make things unpredictable, because the roads can get quite dirty too.
Francois Delecour said: "I think some rain would help us because it would make conditions cooler and we've had some concerns about tyre wear in the pre-event tests. But we have done a lot of work on asphalt since Catalunya and I'm sure we'll be more competitive here than we were there.
MITSUBISHI (2nd - 66 points)
Technical: This event marks the debut of Mitsubishi's first World Rally Car. The Lancer Evolution WRC makes use of the regulations to improve suspension travel and weight distribution over its predecessor. Its wheelbase is 90mm longer than the old model, a factor Ralliart is expecting to improve high-speed stability. Ralliart engineers have also made adjustments to the engine position and angle, and lightened the flywheel in an attempt to improve throttle response. The car has conducted extensive testing, since it must carry both Mäkinen's and Mitsubishi's hopes through to the end of the season.
Sporting: Mitsubishi reverts back to a two-car line-up after Toni Gardemeister's appearances in Finland and New Zealand. Accordingly, Freddy Loix is nominated for manufacturers' points alongside Tommi Mäkinen
Quotes: Tommi Mäkinen said: "If it's down to our performance I'm sure we'll do very well. The car's done a total of two and a half weeks' testing and the first signs are quite encouraging, but it's hard to say until we can compare times with the others. So far my feeling with the new car is good and I'm glad to say that we've found no really major problems in the testing eithe
Freddy Loix said: "The initial feeling with the new car is that it's much easier to drive than the old model and that'll be useful to me here because a lot of this event is new to me. In terms of performance we haven't done a back-to-back test but the handling is better and the engine feels stronger. I'm optimistic
SUBARU (3rd- 46 points)
Technical: Subaru has long since ironed out the transmission glitches that hampered Richard Burns on the Impreza WRC2001's last asphalt outing in Catalunya. That aside, changes to the four works cars (for Burns, Petter Solberg, Markko Martin and Toshihiro Arai) are minimal. All four cars will be fitted with the revised, lighter airbox that Burns used in New Zealand, however. Subaru squeezed in an extra three day Sanremo test near Pisa last week.
Sporting: Richard Burns and Petter Solberg are nominated for manufacturers' points, leaving Markko Martin and Toshihiro Arai eligible for drivers' points only.
Quotes: Richard Burns said: "We did our championship chances the power of good by winning in New Zealand, but this will be another hard event. We were quite pleased by the Pirelli tyres in pre-event testing though and the package has definitely moved on since Catalunya. I've got plenty of confidence.
Petter Solberg said: "I know this rally pretty well now and I finished ninth here last year. I'll be disappointed if I don't finish higher than that because I've been able to do a lot of asphalt testing.
PEUGEOT (4th - 44 points)
Technical: Peugeot brings three brand new 206 WRCs to this event for Marcus Grönholm, Didier Auriol and last year's winner Gilles Panizzi. Auriol's 206 is fitted with mechanical differentials at the front and rear, while the cars used by Panizzi and Grönholm are equipped with 'active' hydraulic diffs instead. All three 206s will use the five-speed gearbox instead of the oft-tried six-speed unit.
Sporting: Peugeot has nominated Catalunya Rally winner Didier Auriol and last year's winner in Italy, Gilles Panizzi, for manufacturers' points. Reigning world champion Marcus Grönholm is eligible for drivers' points only, as is Peugeot's other regular driver Harri Rovanperä, who uses a 206 WRC run by Italian private team Grifone.
Quotes: Didier Auriol said: "My feeling with the car is good, but I'd rather we were using the six-speed gearbox instead of the five speed. For my style of driving, the six-speed is definitely faster. But we still have a very good chance here, although there are probably six or eight drivers who can fight for the win.
Gilles Panizzi said: "This is the first time I've competed with the evolution of the 206 WRC and I prefer it to the old car. I'm hopeful we can repeat the result we got here last year, but the stages are quite different. Last year everything was dry but now it's very slippery in places, especially under the trees where the leaves have kept the water. It will be difficult to find a speed on Friday morning.
SKODA (5th - 15 points)
Technical: Skoda has made a few small modifications to the specification of the Octavia WRC. Armin Schwarz's car features a revised centre differential designed to make tyre wear more consistent through stages. Slight alterations to the differential mapping have also made the car more progressive and slightly quicker to react to changes of direction. Skoda is also using an improved specification of shock absorber.
Sporting: Armin Schwarz and Bruno Thiry are nominated for manufacturers' points as usual, but Skoda is also running a third Octavia for rising Czech star Roman Kresta.
Quotes: Armin Schwarz said: "A top ten finish will be a good result for us here. There's a very good entry but if the roads are slippery, then I'm more optimistic.
HYUNDAI (6th - 10 points)
Technical: Hyundai has made few changes to the Accent WRC2s beyond the minor engine modifications that were introduced on the last round in Finland. The only notable difference is a new front suspension upright that gives a larger range of set-up options and anti-roll bar settings.
Sporting: Regular Accent driver Alister McRae is joined in the team by Italian asphalt expert Piero Liatti. The former Monte Carlo winner replaces Kenneth Eriksson for Sanremo and the following asphalt rally, Corsica, before the Swede returns for Australia and Great Britain.
Quotes: Piero Liatti said: "If it rains all day, every day, it'll be alright with me! The stages here are nice but under the trees, it's very slippery when you drive over the leaves. It's hard to say what result we can aim for
Technical: The three Xsara WRCs will run in essentially the same specification that Philippe Bugalski used to win the non-championship Rally Deutschland in July. However, the cars of both Jesus Puras and Sebastien Loeb will use water-cooled brakes to compensate for the drivers' use of left-foot braking.
Sporting: Citroen is not eligible for manufacturers' points following an agreement with the FIA and fellow manufacturers earlier this season. For its third world championship outing of the year, the French manufacturer has entered regular Xsara WRC pilots Philippe Bugalski and Jesus Puras, and runaway FIA Super 1600 Cup leader Sebastien Loeb. Loeb has been granted dispensation to move up from the 1600cc category for this event only (he'll return to his regular Saxo for Corsica).
Quotes: Philippe Bugalski said: "The roads weren't completely dry during the recce so it's going to be difficult. The grip level will change from corner to corner, depending on whether it's under trees or on leaves or not. But of course I'm confident. We showed in Catalunya that the car is competitive on asphalt and that we are competitive on asphalt too.
Sanremo is the fourth round of the inaugural FIA Super 1600 Cup, a cost-controlled series designed to introduce new, young talent into the world championship. Current series leader Sebastien Loeb has already reaped the benefits of winning all three opening rounds, as the Frenchman has been granted permission to step up from his regular Citroen Saxo to a Xsara WRC for this event only. With the dominant force absent, a fresh winner in the category is guaranteed and competition is likely to be extremely close between drivers like Andrea Dallavilla (Fiat), Francois Duval (Ford), Patrick Magaud (Ford) and Niall McShea (Citroen).
The event is also a round of the FIA Teams Cup, where Toyota drivers Henrik Lundgaard and Pasi Hagstrom will each be aiming to make the series lead their own. And the situation is even more finely balanced in the Group N category for more standard cars - Argentine driver Gabriel Pozzo can clinch the world title here in Italy.
Leg 1, Friday 5th October (523.91km)
08:24 SS1 Coldirodi 1 12.41km
09:12 SS2 Langan 1 25.29km
09:51 SS2b Rezzo 1 12.29km
11:50 SS3 San Bernardo 1 19.44km
12:45 SS4 Nava 1 19.03km
15:50 SS5 Coldirodi 2 12.41km
16:38 SS6 Langan 2 25.29km
17:17 SS6b Rezzo 2 12.29km
Leg 2, Saturday 6th October (520.35km)
08:07 SS7 Passo Teglia 1 14.32km
08:32 SS7b Molini 1 25.29km
09:35 SS8 Perinaldo 1 12.16km
11:52 SS9 San Bernardo 2 19.44km
12:47 SS10 Nava 2 19.03km
15:35 SS11 Passo Teglia 2 14.32km
16:00 SS11b Molini 2 25.29km
17:03 SS12 Perinaldo 2 12.16km
Leg 3, Sunday 7th October (381.71 km)
08:32 SS13 San Romolo 1 28.64km
09:45 SS14 Colle d'Oggia 1 15.19km
12:33 SS15 San Romolo 2 28.64km
13:46 SS16 Colle d'Oggia 2 15.19km
16:00 Finish of the rally in San Remo