I noticed an American on the entry list: Alex Kihurani!
Craig Breen's Acropolis Rally victory has given him the self-confidence to live up to his Circuit of Ireland favourite status this week.
The Peugeot driver took his maiden European Rally Championship win in Greece last month and arrives in Belfast as the series leader and number one seed for the first ever Circuit of Ireland European qualifier.
"I'm taking it everything in my stride," said Breen.
"I feel great about the whole 'favourite' thing.
"I've got one win out of the way and now everything feels like it's really starting to click. I've stopped questioning myself. I know I can do it.
"Winning the Circuit would mean everything to me. And if I had a message to send out to people it would be to tell them that I will be doing absolutely everything I can to make that happen.
"Nobody wants this more than me. It's the biggest event in Ireland and the biggest event for me."
Breen heads up a 38-strong ERC international field.
His main competition will come from his fellow 208 driver Kevin Abbring, Robert Barrable's Ford Fiesta R5 and the Skoda Fabia S2000s of Esapekka Lappi, Sepp Weigand and Neil Simpson.
Barrable is best in ERC Circuit of Ireland Qualifying
Robert Barrable will get the pick of the starting positions for the Discover Northern Ireland Circuit of Ireland Rally at Belfast’s City Hall this evening.
Barrable was fastest on the Qualifying Stage for round four of the FIA European Rally Championship earlier today. As a result he will be the first of nine FIA and ERC priority drivers to choose their road order for Friday’s opening leg.
Driving a Ford Fiesta R5, Barrable posted a time of 2m22.322s over the 4.10-kilometre Whinney Hill test north of host city Belfast. The stage took place in wet conditions following a brief shower and the 26-year-old from Dublin capitalised on his decision to select a soft-compound Michelin tyre.
“It was a bit of a shock to me as well to be on the top step after Qualifying,” said the Tunnock’s World Rally Team driver. “We pushed very hard and took a couple of chances and it seemed to pay off. We had a bit of an advantage over everyone else. We went with the softer tyre, which benefited us. It was pre-empted.”
Robert Consani also impressed with the second fastest time in his Peugeot 207 Super 2000. The Frenchman was 2.148s down on Barrable with current European championship leader Craig Breen third quickest in his Peugeot Rally Academy 208T16, which was fitted with hard compound Michelin covers. “That was interesting,” said Breen afterwards. “We made a complete mess of the first hairpin and spun the car. It was a survival stage, just get through.”
Kevin Abbring was fourth in the second 208T16 with Sepp Wiegand the leading ŠKODA Fabia Super 2000 driver in fifth, one place ahead of team-mate Esapekka Lappi. Brothers Sam and Josh Moffett were seventh and eighth respectively with Neil Simpson ninth following an off at the first corner in his ex-Lappi Fabia S2000.
Drivers will select their starting positions from 18:00hrs local time this evening. Meanwhile, the opening stage, Loughries Village, covers 6.92 kilometres and gets underway at 09:13hrs. More than 100 drivers are tackling the Discover Northern Ireland Circuit of Ireland Rally.
17 April 2014 17:33 ERC Circuit of Ireland Rally pre-event press conference
Robert Barrable, Craig Breeen, Esapekka Lappi and Kris Meeke attended the pre-event press conference for round four of the FIA European Rally Championship.
After SS1: ERC ace Lappi on top on Circuit of Ireland
Esapekka Lappi leads round four of the FIA European Rally Championship by 2.2s after he set the pace through the opening Loughries Village test.
Flying Finn Lappi took 3m54.0s to complete the 6.92-kilometre run, the first of 18 stages included on the Discover Northern Ireland Circuit of Ireland Rally.
Driving a ŠKODA Fabia Super 2000, ‘EP’ outgunned Peugeot Rally Academy duo Kevin Abbring and Craig Breen, who were second and third fastest respectively.
“I didn’t come so well because many times I brake too early and stuff like that, maybe the other drivers are kidding with me,” said the 23-year-old ERC event winner. “I am not happy with my pace and I can improve a lot. It’s good.”
Abbring, at the wheel of a Peugeot 208T16s, was 1.0s faster than Irish hero Breen. The Dutchman said: “I really enjoyed myself but I didn’t know what to expect. You lose the contact with the road when you jump so it’s challenging. But it’s a good start.”
Sepp Wiegand, in the second works Fabia, was fourth with Qualifying Stage winner Robert Barrable going fifth quickest in his Ford Fiesta R5.
Robert Consani reported hitting a “big stone” on the first corner and wasn’t sure if he’d picked up a puncture on his Peugeot 207 S2000, which was nursing a slightly damaged wheel at the stage finish.
Josh Moffett, who is running first on the road, said: “The road is clean, there is no much or stones.”
Stage two, Bucks Head 1, goes live at 10:23hrs local time and measures 14.64 kilometres in length.
After SS2: Lappi extends ERC lead in Northern Ireland
Esapekka Lappi has extended his lead on the Discover Northern Ireland Circuit of Ireland Rally to 5.2 seconds after he claimed his second stage best in succession on round four of the FIA European Rally Championship.
Lappi, in a ŠKODA Fabia Super 2000, edged Craig Breen (Peugeot 208T16) by 2.8s with Kevin Abbring 0.2s behind his Peugeot Rally Academy team-mate in third. It means Breen is now 0.7s behind second-placed Abbring in the overall classification.
“I try to be on the limit, one time I brake too much,” said Lappi. “I am not on the risk but I have quite good speed. The feeling is good, the car is working perfectly, the pacenotes are very good, I did not have to correct them at all.”
Ford Fiesta R5 driver Robert Barrable has demoted Sepp Wiegand for fourth overall after he went fourth quickest.
Aaron MacHale, one of the contenders for ERC Production Car Cup honours, failed to make it through the stage after he went off the road in his Mitusbishi Lancer. Class rival Robert Woodside overshot a square-left junction in his Lancer. Zoltán Bessenyey reported a continuation of the brake problems that struck his Honda Civic Type R on the opening stage.
After SS3: Hat-trick for Lappi as Hamiltons Folly thrills ERC aces
Esapekka Lappi continues to lead round four of the FIA European Rally Championship after he made it a hat-trick of stage wins with another stunning performance in his ŠKODA Fabia Super 2000.
Lappi was fastest through the legendary Hamiltons Folly test by a mere 0.2s with Kevin Abbring (Peugeot 208T16) second fastest. Heading to stage four of the Discover Northern Ireland Circuit of Ireland Rally, Lappi leads Abbring by 5.4s with Irishman Craig Breen in third in the second Peugeot Rally Academy 208T16.
“It was quite crazy with the jumps,” said Lappi at the completion of the 17.02-kilometre stage. “We made a huge jump… I brake much more for the crest before and then on the next one we were flying.”
Abbring described the jump-filled stage as the “best stage of my life”, adding: “Fifty per cent of the time I was in the air, there were 40 per cent more jumps than I thought there would be. It crazy but I really like this stage, it is how rallies should be.”
Breen, the European championship leader, completed the stage with the rear windscreen missing from his car, the result of a hefty landing over a jump. He was third quickest, 2.1s down on Lappi. Elsewhere, Sam Moffett has climbed to fourth with Sepp Wiegand fifth and Robert Barrable dropping to sixth in his Ford Fiesta R5.
Robert Consani is seventh overall with Neil Simpson eighth and Daniel McKenna leading the ERC 2WD Championship category in ninth. He’s 11.1s up on Finn Jukka Korhonen in a similar Citroën DS3 R3T.
Chris Ingram tops the ERC Junior category but Andrea Crugnola is out after the Italian crashed his 208 R2. Crugnola had gone fastest in class on stage two but his exit promotes championship leader Jan Černý into second place and leaves Ingram with an advantage of 9.1s.
Josh Moffett heads the ERC Production Car Cup runners despite a loss of brakes on his Mitsubishi Lancer. Rallying returnee Robert Woodside, who was quickest of the showroom class runners through stage three, is 15.5s behind.
The 10.55-kilometre Lough Henney stage is next at 12:14hrs local time.
After SS4: Brave Lappi unbeatable in the ERC
Esapekka Lappi remains unbeatable on the Discover Northern Ireland Circuit of Ireland Rally after he made it four stage wins out of four on the FIA European Rally Championship counter.
Lappi, from Finland, edged Craig Breen by 0.2s to extend his advantage out front to 6.0s over Kevin Abbring with one stage to go until service in Belfast’s Titanic Quarter.
“It’s good, especially the last one,” said the ŠKODA Fabia Super 2000 driver. “They told me yesterday that stage is where you can make the difference and I managed to beat them all and I am still in front now. But it’s not so much about the car, it’s how brave you are and how good the set-up is.”
By beating Peugeot Rally Academy team-mate Abbring through the 10.55 kilometres of Lough Henney, Breen is now 2.2s adrift in the battle for third in his identical 208T16.
Despite admitting he couldn’t go any faster in his Fabia, Lappi’s team-mate Sepp Wiegand has moved ahead of Sam Moffett and Robert Barrable into fourth overall. The 9.92-kilometre Ballygowan stage is next up at 12:43hrs local time.
After SS5: Battling Breen closes up on Abbring
Craig Breen, the FIA European Rally Championship leader following his maiden win in Greece last month, is just 1.4s behind team-mate Kevin Abbring in the battle for second place on the Discover Northern Ireland Circuit of Ireland Rally.
Nursing a cut hand, Breen was 0.8s faster than Abbring through the 9.92 kilometres of Ballygowan. He sustained the injury while working on his Peugeot 208T16’s smashed rear windscreen after the Hamiltons Folly test.
“I tried to fix it and caught my hand on the glass,” said the Peugeot Rally Academy driver. “The screen supports the rear spoiler and I was trying to strap it up because it’s coming down and loses it’s effectiveness. It’s making the car a little bit nervous on the high-speed stuff and I was cautious not to lose the rear. The weather is warmer than I expected and maybe a harder tyre would have been better. But it’s been a relatively good loop.”
Out front, Esapekka Lappi has made it five stage wins out of five to extend his advantage to 7.7s in his ŠKODA Fabia Super 2000.
A 30-minute service halt in Belfast’s Titanic Quarter is next from 13:30hrs local time. Stage six, the second visit to Bucks Head, begins at 16:01hrs.
Here's Parpottas and Kihourani on SS1 (lower right)
Xav @mexav · 3h
A few from SS3 this morning from the @FIAERC @CircuitIreland #thecircuit
Big Air pic.twitter.com/UTn1TJ76HP
After SS6: Wiegand slips back as Lappi pulls clear
There were mixed fortunes for factory ŠKODA drivers Esapekka Lappi and Sepp Wiegand on a dramatic stage six of the Discover Northern Ireland Circuit of Ireland Rally.
While Finn Lappi raced to his sixth consecutive fastest stage time to build his lead on round four of the FIA European Rally Championship to 17.2s, his German team-mate Wiegand slipped from fourth to sixth when he overshot a junction less than one kilometre from the start of the 14.64-kilometre Bucks Head test.
“I missed a junction so I had to reverse and come back,” said Wiegand. “We changed a bit the set-up in service and we lose a bit the brake grip.”
Lappi said: “I drove the same as before. It was perfect, I tried to push a bit more. It was a good drive but not that good.”
Kevin Abbring reported losing time when he missed a junction close to the start. He drops to third overall behind Peugeot Rally Academy team-mate Craig Breen. Following the stage Abbring stopped to check under the bonnet of his 208T16. “I missed the very first junction,” said the Dutchman. “I was too careful the first time but I was too quick this time. The tyres were too cold and I had to stop completely.”
There were problems too Breen who ripped the rear bumper from his car with a huge moment when he reported bottomed out in a compression flat in firth gear. He was 8.1s slower than Lappi but now heads Abbring by 1.1s in the overall standings.
Breen’s moment caused problems for ERC Junior Petter Kristiansen, who ran over the Peugeot’s bumper, which left his ŠKODA Fabia R2 with a puncture and a loss of brakes.
After SS7: Not so Good Friday for ERC star Abbring
Kevin Abbring has conceded that he may be about to retire from round four of the FIA European Rally Championship due to a suspected technical problem on his Peugeot Rally Academy 208T16.
Abbring stopped to check under the bonnet of his new-generation car at the completion of stage six and finished stage seven of the Discover Northern Ireland Circuit of Ireland Rally out of order. He’s currently in seventh and more than three minutes off the lead having been in the fight for a podium for much of the day.
“We don't know what [has happened] but I couldn’t push,” said Abbring. “I want to drive tomorrow so maybe I will retire. Since the previous stage we have had a problem but I want to find out what first.”
Out front, ŠKODA Fabia S2000 driver Esapekka Lappi made it seven stage wins in a row by going 1.3s faster than Abbring’s team-mate Craig Breen, the current European championship following his maiden win on the last round in Greece.
“We had a good run,” said Lappi. “There was a small crest that threw us into the air. When we landed the very hard the steering wheel came out of my hand but that was just one tiny moment and generally it went well.”
Up next is the repeat of Lough Henney at 17:52hrs local time.
After SS8: Breen ends Lappi winning run with first stage best
Craig Breen has bagged his first stage win of this year’s Discover Northern Ireland Circuit of Ireland Rally – by a slender margin of 0.1s.
Driving a Peugeot 208T16, Breen’s charging performance through the repeat of Lough Henney means Esapekka Lappi’s run of wins on round four of the FIA European Rally Championship is over.
Despite Breen’s stage best, Lappi continues to lead the Tarmac contest by 18.4s with two stages of leg one remaining: “It’s fine, a very good stage with no mistakes,” said the ŠKODA Motorsport driver. “I’m not saying we are controlling but it’s a good feeling all the time and it’s easy to drive fast.”
Robert Barrable is now 8.6s ahead of fellow Irishman Sam Moffett in the battle for third with Sepp Wiegand fifth and Robert Consani sixth. Kevin Abbring did not start the 10.55-kilometre stage in the second Peugeot Rally Academy 208T16 amid unconfirmed reports that he’s retired from the Belfast event with a technical problem.
Friday’s penultimate stage, the 9.92 kilometres of Ballygowan is up next at 18:21hrs local time.
After SS9: Breen fastest again on ERC asphalt showcase
FIA European Rally Championship leader Craig Breen has scored his second stage win on the Discover Northern Ireland Circuit of Ireland Rally with a rapid run through the repeat of Ballygowan.
Irish hero Breen, in a Peugeot 208T16, was 4.0s quicker than event pacesetter Esapekka Lappi through the 9.92-kilometre run to trim the ŠKODA Fabia S2000 driver’s advantage to 14.4s heading to the day-closing Newtownards TT stage. “It was okay, no mistakes and it went well in my opinion,” said Lappi at the stage finish.
Jukka Korhonen, who had been closing on Daniel McKenna in the battle for the ERC 2WD Championship laurels, suffered a heavy crash in his Citroën DS3 R3T. McKenna reported that Korhonen and co-driver Marko Salminen were okay although he was one of several drivers to slow at the scene of the accident.
The Newtownards TT stage goes live at 19:16hrs local time. Measuring 2.30 kilometres in length, the town centre test takes in part of the famous Ards Tourist Trophy Circuit where legends such as Tazio Nuvolari and Rudi Caracciola raced in the 1920s and ’30s. Thousands of fans are already in position to following the action.
After SS10: Breen snatches Newtownards TT stage glory
Craig Been has brought leg one of the Discover Northern Ireland Circuit of Ireland Rally to a close with the fastest time through the 2.30-kilometre Newtownards TT stage.
The town centre test takes in part of the famous Ards Tourist Trophy Circuit where legends such as Tazio Nuvolari and Rudi Caracciola raced in the 1920s and ’30s.
Cheered on by thousands of fans enjoying the Good Friday sunshine, Peugeot 208T16 driver Breen was 1.3s quicker than Sepp Wiegand (ŠKODA Fabia Super 2000) with Wiegand’s team-mate Esapekka Lappi next up, 1.8s slower than Breen. It means Lappi’s lead over Breen starting day two of the FIA European Rally Championship counter is 12.6s.
“It’s not been such a bad day,” said Irishman Breen. “It’s a bit difficult, it’s a tricky little stage. The rally definitely is not over yet, we can do it.”
Sam Moffett, who is in a close battle for third with fellow Irishman Robert Barrable and Germany’s Sepp Wiegand, lost time when he missed a chicane during the street test. “I couldn’t see with the sun in my eyes, we missed a chicane and had to reverse,” he said at the stage finish.
Barrable added: “That stage was quite tricky, we were just very cautious with the kerbs and the hairpins.”
Crews are now heading back to Belfast’s Titanic Quarter for a 45-minute service halt. Saturday’s second leg begins with the 13.53 kilometres of Bulls Brook at 08:44hrs local time.
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After SS11: Joy for Lappi, despair for Breen
Esapekka Lappi has a clear lead on round four of the FIA European Rally Championship after Craig Breen stopped on Saturday’s opening stage with reports that his Peugeot 208T16 has been struck by a technical problem.
Irish hero and ERC title leader Breen, whose Peugeot Rally Academy team changed the radiator in service in Belfast’s Titanic Quarter this morning, is currently parked up on the entry to a right-hand corner approximately three kilometres from the start of the 13.53-kilometre Bulls Brook test.
Lappi, who started the stage two minutes behind Breen but with a lead of 12.6s, confirmed that Breen had stopped on the stage when he completed the run.
“He is maybe two or three kilometres after the start,” said the ŠKODA Motorsport driver. “He changed the radiator in the service but they have to add water already on the road section. The bonnet was open and he was parked by the side of the road. When I saw him it became immediately quite difficult for me because now I am just surviving to the finish and try to avoid any mistakes. I still keep a good speed and rhythm but now I am in a good situation. I wanted a battle but I have to go to the finish.”
Lappi, who was second fastest through the stage, leads by 1m40.4s. Robert Barrable climbs to second in his Ford Fiesta R5 with Sepp Wiegand third, 14.7s behind in the second works Fabia. Sam Moffett, who won the stage in his Ford Fiesta RRC, is now 5.2s behind Wiegand.
“I want to push on and get up to third place but there are two good drivers in front of me,” said Moffett. “I made a few mistakes at the start but then I got into it. I have to set a target.”
Elsewhere, Chris Ingram’s lead in ERC Junior is down to 9.3s with Jan Černý in hot pursuit. Ingram reported more problems with his Renault Twingo’s brakes. “I’ve got no confidence with the braking,” he said. “We tried harder pads but they’re still overheating. I am losing a lot of time.”
Stage 12, the 29.02-kilometre Bronte Homeland stage, is up next.
After SS12: Podium pressure off Wiegand as Moffett hits trouble
Sepp Wiegand’s bid for a podium finish on the Discover Northern Ireland Circuit of Ireland Rally has taken a turn for the better after close rival Sam Moffett stopped in the Bronte Homeland stage.
Moffett, in a Ford Fiesta RRC, has shone on his FIA European Rally Championship debut and was fastest of all on Saturday’s opening stage to close to within 5.2s of the ŠKODA AUTO Deutschland driver. However, Moffett’s hopes of a podium ended when his car suffered a technical failure, which left him stranded on the stage for several minutes before he was eventually able to complete the run.
“I saw him standing on stage,” said Wiegand. “For sure it’s a little less pressure but I’m still struggling with myself a bit. I feel I can go faster but I cannot. When I saw Moffett I go a little bit off because it’s really easy to make a mistake. I will try my best to be on the podium.”
Rally leader Esapekka Lappi was fastest through the 29.02-kilometre test for his eighth stage win of the ERC counter. His advantage over Robert Barrable now stands at 1m44.8s. Barrable, who was third quickest, reported a noise from his Ford Fiesta R5, which he stopped to check at the finish of the stage. Barrable heads Wiegand by 14.1s with the 14.89-kilometre Gregorlough stage up next at 10:42hrs local time.
Meanwhile, Robert Consani spun his Peugeot 207 S2000 early in the stage but remains ahead of Neil Simpson in what is now a battle for fourth overall following Moffett’s woes. ERC Production Car Cup contender Robert Woodside lost several minutes following myriad problems in his Mitsubishi Lancer, which included an anti-lag glitch and a trip into a field due to a brake problem.
After SS13: Ingram crash puts Černý on top in ERC Junior
Jan Černý is the new leader of the FIA ERC Junior Championship section of the Discover Northern Ireland Circuit of Ireland Rally after long-term pacesetter Chris Ingram crashed heavily.
The British teenager was 7.1s in front of his Czech rival starting the 14.89-kilometre Gregorlough stage but hit trouble approximately two kilometres from the finish of the run.
“It was a really heavy crash but they are out of the car and okay,” said Černý. “I am sorry for him. It was a fast section over a crest, the car rolled many times about two kilometres from here. It was good fighting with him but sometimes things like this happen. We were pushing also, hopefully the next time will be better for him.”
Sepp Wiegand was fastest through the stage in his ŠKODA AUTO Deutschland Fabia Super 2000 to close to within 9.5s of second-placed Robert Barrable.
“We try to drive smoothly, it is difficult, we are on third place and we have more risk to lose third place,” said Wiegand. “It is difficult to know how fast to go. It is good, we are on the way to the podium now. I can go faster but maybe it is enough now.”
Event leader Esapekka Lappi was second quickest, 0.7s down on Wiegand. Heading to the first of two runs through the Lisburn street stage, Lappi leads by 1m48.7s.
After SS14 and SS15: Fight on for second as Wiegand closes on Barrable
The fight for second place on round four of the FIA European Rally Championship is very much on after Sepp Wiegand closed to within 8.7s of Robert Barrable following the two runs through the Lisburn street stage.
Wiegand was quickest on the first pass of the 1.13-kilometre test with ŠKODA team-mate Esapekka Lappi going quickest on the second run.
Lappi continues to lead the Discover Northern Ireland Circuit of Ireland Rally in the lead factory ŠKODA Fabia Super 2000. Crews are now heading to Belfast’s Titanic Quarter for a 30-minute service halt.
Stage 16, the repeat of Bulls Brook, begins at 13:59hrs local time.
After SS16: McKenna on course in ERC 2WD
Daniel McKenna continues to edge closer to a maximum score in the FIA ERC 2WD Championship following the repeat of the Bulls Brook stage.
McKenna, who is using the Discover Northern Ireland Circuit of Ireland Rally to make his competition debut in a Citroën DS3 R3T, is more than a minute in front in the two-wheel-drive category. At the finish of stage 16, the Pirelli-backed Irishman said: “That’s brilliant, the car is perfect and I’m really pleased with the pacenotes, the notes have been perfect. I want to make sure I bring the car home now at this stage.”
In the battle for second, Sepp Wiegand has narrowed Robert Barrable’s advantage to 6.9s after he went quickest of all on the 13.53-kilometre test.
Wiegand, in a ŠKODA Fabia Super 2000, was 1.8s faster than the time Barrable managed in his Fiesta R5. “Third place would be okay for us but for sure I want to fight for second,” said the German.
Barrable added: “He took two seconds off us, we didn’t think he’d do that because we took some time off him this morning on this stage. We’ve got new brake pads but it’s okay.”
Rally leader Esapekka Lappi was third quickest, 6.1s slower than team-mate Wiegand. However, his advantage is a commanding 1m45.1s ahead of Barrable.
Up next is the 29.02-kilometre Bronte Homeland stage, which is due to begin at 14:45hrs local time.
After SS17: Field trip drops Barrable to third in the ERC
Robert Barrable has slipped to third overall on round four of the FIA European Rally Championship following a troubled penultimate stage on the Discover Northern Ireland Circuit of Ireland Rally.
Irishman Barrable started the Bronte Homeland test with an advantage of 6.9s over Sepp Wiegand. But an overshoot followed by a trip into a field means Barrable is now 5.2s behind his German rival heading to the final stage of the all-Tarmac rally.
“It was brain fade,” said Barrable. “I broke fractionally later than normal for a square-left over a crest, went into a field and had to turn around. These things happen and hopefully no damage has been done. Sepp has been driving well and I’ve made a stupid mistake.”
Wiegand was fastest through the 29.02-kilometre test, 2.6s quicker than ŠKODA Motorsport team-mate Esapekka Lappi, whose overall lead grows to 1m49.4s.
Elsewhere ERC 2WD leader Daniel McKenna has moved ahead of ERC Production Car Cup pacesetter Josh Moffett into sixth position after Moffett suffered a brake glitch on his Mitsubishi Lancer.
The final stage, Gregorlough 2, measures 14.89 kilometres in length and begins at 16:15hrs local time.
After SS18: Perfect 10 for ERC winner Lappi
Esapekka Lappi has made it two wins from three starts in this year’s FIA European Rally Championship with a dominant victory on the Discover Northern Ireland Circuit of Ireland Rally.
Lappi, who becomes the third different Finnish winner of the legendary Tarmac event, made sure of top spot with the fastest time through the closing Gregorlough test, his 10th stage best of the two-day contest.
“It was absolutely a perfect rally,” said Lappi, who retakes the lead of the European championship. “I keep our performance from yesterday and that’s what I am proud of the most. We were supposed to have a fight but that stopped after the first stage so it was about surviving to the finish after that.”
Lappi’s team-mate Sepp Wiegand beat Robert Barrable to second with Robert Consani fourth, Neil Simpson fifth and ERC 2WD winner Daniel McKenna sixth. Josh Moffett won the ERC Production Car Cup in seventh with Jan Černý making it two wins out of two in ERC Junior. “It’s really good for us, I’m really happy we won again,” said the Czech. “It can’t be better I think.”
Crews are now heading back to Belfast’s Titanic Quarter for a short service before the podium finish.
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Next Rnd 5: 49th SATA Rallye Açores
Portugal - Gravel 15-17 May 2014
Based Săo Miguel, the Atlantic archipelago’s largest island, the event features stunning countryside and narrow and undulating gravel stages. Changeable weather is also a factor
Official Website: satarallyeacores.com/en/
Listen Live: rallyradio.com/