FIA European Rally Championship 2020, Round 2 of 6 Rally Liepāja leg two fable: 16 August 2020
*Solberg, 18, claims 2d FIA European Rally Championship victory popular
*Lukyanuk maintains title advantage with 2d-role components within the wait on of Østberg
*Érdi Jr holds on for comeback victory after late terror
*Torn triumphs in ERC3/ERC3 Junior following late heartbreak for Sesks
*Rada scores debut Abarth Rally Cup success
*P1 Racing Fuels Podium Assert rewards prime crews
Oliver Solberg has further underlined his role as one of global rallying’s prime abilities with a 2d consecutive victory on Rally Liepāja, the fastest round of the FIA European Rally Championship.
Solberg, 18, and co-driver Aaron Johnston led from Saturday afternoon’s opening Talsi stage and overcame a late terror to preserve in their Pirelli-equipped Volkswagen Polo GTI R5 before Mads Østberg and Alexey Lukyanuk, who maintains his ERC title advantage by four components.
Afterwards, Solberg, whose father Petter gained the FIA World Rally Championship in 2003, acknowledged: “It’s been very tricky, no longer a straightforward rally I present you. It became once very anxious starting up with the stall nevertheless I stored pushing. Then we lost 20s with the scamper on the generous stage the day outdated to this. I attempted to push and fabricate a bigger gap this day and the tyres and the automobile had been out of the ordinary. For the first half of stage eight we had been on three cylinders nevertheless within the 2d half the engine started working again and I pushed adore angry. We had been lucky the engine started working again because I became once very alarmed.”
Utilizing the occasion to prepare for Rally Estonia, his next world shuttle, Østberg’s level of interest became once on elegant-tuning the gap-up of his PH Sport Citroën C3 R5 and adjusting to excessive-jog competition once extra having no longer driven since Rally Sweden in February. Nonetheless with Østberg no longer eligible for ERC components, Lukyanuk will leave Latvia with components for 2d. “It became once a extraordinarily unbelievable jog,” acknowledged the Saintéloc Junior Body of workers driver “We had been flat out your complete formula. I attempted to push and we scored correct components and I’m chuffed with my efficiency.”
TGS Worldwide’s Eerik Pietarinen impressed on his ERC debut in fourth, one role before Craig Breen (Body of workers MRF Tyres). Breen’s team-mate Emil Lindholm completed sixth followed by BMA Autosport Hyundai driver Grégoire Munster and Mikko Heikkilä, every other Finnish newcomer. Rallye Body of workers Spain’s ERC3 Junior champion Efrén Llarena took a solid ninth with American Sean Johnston, an ERC3 graduate, in P10. Both Llarena and Johnston had been competing on gravel for the first time in their Citroëns.
Raul Jeets – who became once hampered by a broken instruments lever this morning – Erik Cais (Yacco ACCR Body of workers), Miko Marczyk (ORLEN Body of workers), Dominik Dinkel (Brose Motorsport) and DriftCompany Rally Body of workers’s Niki Mayr-Melnhof rounded out the prime 15.
Leg two round-up: Solberg claims impressive victory
Oliver Solberg started leg two with a 10.0s advantage following a solid opening day. After losing 0.1s to Mads Østberg on Sunday’s first stage, he went quickest on the next jog to head 13.8s clear. With every other stage preserve on SS7, which came after the struck a marker pole, Solberg returned to carrier in Liepāja 22.4s in entrance and seemingly within the clear.
Alternatively, an engine downside on stage eight brought on the 18-year-faded true downside, nevertheless the downside cleared for SS9. In role of cruise to the attain, Solberg became once on the assault on the deciding SS10, which he gained to divulge a 2d Rally Liepāja victory by 20.1s.
Craig Breen demoted Eerik Pietarinen for fourth on SS5 with Callum Devine overtaking Erik Cais – opening the boulevard for the first time in his career – for P10. Nonetheless Devine’s challenge ended when he rolled heavily on SS6, happily with out injure to either he or co-driver Brian Hoy.
Breen then lost time with a broken rear-left tyre on SS7, which he drove on for 12 kilometres. It became once led to by the Irishman inadvertently working over a corne marker, which had fallen on the boulevard afte being hit by every other car. The prolong dropped him to sixth for this reason with Pietarinen shifting wait on up to fourth with Emil Lindholm fifth in the starting up build. Nonetheless a heavy touchdown followed by an off delayed the Finnish ERC1 Junior driver and he at generous came dwelling 1.8s within the wait on of his team-mate. Breen and Lindholm are competing within the ERC as allotment of the MRF Tyres’ pattern programme.
Ken Torn gained ERC3/ERC3 Junior after Mārtiņš Sesks retired at the close of SS8 with a broken radiator, the outcome of a heavy touchdown. Martin Rada profited from Andrea Mabellini’s exit with a mechanical downside to preserve the Abarth Rally Cup on his debut, while Tibor Érdi Jr overcame an engine fault to preserve ERC2 on his championship return.
Unhurried heartbreak for ERC3 Junior Sesks…
Mārtiņš Sesks has suffered late heartbreak on his dwelling round of the FIA European Rally Championship. Starting the closing loop of three levels main Ken Torn by 2.8s, Liepāja-born Sesks reached the attain of stage eight with smoke bellowing from his Ford Fiesta Rally4. Even supposing he became once ready to drag faraway from the stage stopline, he quickly parked up to investigate the downside. “It’s a broken radiator,” the uncomfortable Sesks acknowledged. “After a large soar plenty of limited stones came in. It’s a extraordinarily large disappointment.”
…nevertheless extra joy for Torn
Ken Torn made it two ERC3/ERC3 Junior wins in succession in his Pirelli-equipped Ford Fiesta Rally4. Even supposing he one way or the opposite benefited from Mārtiņš Sesks’ retirement, the Estonian had closed to within 1.1s with two levels generous. Dennis Rådström and double FIA European Rallycross champion Reinis Nitišs completed the rostrum with Gregor Jeets, Miika Hokkanen and Adam Westlund rounding out the prime six. Pep Bassas (Rallye Body of workers Spain), Nikola Landa, Sergio Cuesta and Rachele Somaschini had been next up on their Rally Liepāja debuts.
Double ERC2 champion Erdi Jr holds on
Tibor Érdi Jr made an instantaneous impact on his return to the FIA ERC2 class with victory in his family-jog Mitsubishi Lancer. Nonetheless having dominated the excessive-jog gravel occasion from the begin, the Hungarian continued a never-wracking attain when his car’s engine dropped on to three cylinders. Despite stopping twice on the generous stage, he became once ready to achieve the attain before Latvian driver Ainārs Igaveņš. Dmitry Feofanov became once no longer off target for 2d nevertheless dropped within the wait on of Igaveņš when an impact downside struck on SS7. Zelindo Melegari extended his championship lead in fourth.
Abarth Rally Cup newcomer Rada earnings from Mabellini’s anguish
Martin Rada claimed a debut victory within the Abarth Rally Cup, taking benefit of concerns for opponents Dariusz Poloński and Andrea Mabellini. Poloński, from Poland, crashed in mud on stage four and became once a non-starter on Sunday attributable to injure. Italian Mabellini, competing on gravel for the first time, inherited first role handiest for a mechanical downside to drive his retirement within the center of Sunday’s penultimate loop. Following his triumph, Czech driver Rada acknowledged: “I became once enjoying the riding on gravel. It’s my first begin on gravel with a rear-wheel-drive car, I handiest did one gravel rally before nevertheless with entrance-wheel drive. It became once no longer so straightforward and the grip became once diverse in locations, nevertheless I loved and even supposing I came right here handiest to be taught.”
Gryazin thanks team for overnight repairs
Nikolay Gryazin thanked his Crimson Grey Body of workers for serving to him to achieve Rally Liepāja. The double occasion winner became once within the victory fight when he crashed out on Saturday’s closing stage. Nonetheless following intensive overnight restore by his mechanics, Gryazin and original co-driver Konstantin Aleksandrov had been ready to restart on Sunday morning. “The team did a terribly sizable job to restore the automobile and I basically must claim thanks to them,” acknowledged Gryazin, the 2020 ERC1 Junior champion. “The day outdated to this I did a limited mistake within the braking looking to present larger the jog. It occurs so this is in a position to almost definitely be an staunch lesson for me. It became once a left nook 10 kilometres from the begin, moderately a straightforward role. On the braking I lose the automobile and I trudge large. The injure became once on the entrance and a limited bit on the roof. The team made the roof extra straight, fitted a brand original window and there became once something they changed with the powersteering pump, and they radiator. They did no longer accumulate great sleep.”
Rally Liepāja organisers praised for COVID-19 response
Rally Liepāja organiser, RA Occasions, became once broadly praised for its COVID-19 response administration. To boot as imposing plenty of well being and hygiene tests, the cmopany applied a stringent testing programme which required stakeholders to be examined for COVID-19 before travelling to Latvia and on arrival at a staunch laboratory.
P1 Racing Fuels Podium Assert awards drivers
The P1 Racing Fuels Podium Assert, jog for the first time within the center of the 2019 ERC season finale in Hungary, continued on Rally Liepāja. It rewarded the prime three finishes in ERC1 and ERC2 with gasoline vouchers that can almost definitely even be exchanged for P1 XR5 jog gasoline at subsequent occasions, serving to opponents to further prick the cost of competing. Across both categories, the winning drivers purchased 150 litres of gasoline, while the 2d and third placed drivers purchased 100L and 50L respectively.
PROVISIONAL TOP 15 POSITIONS (after 10 levels, 175.83 kilometres)
1 Oliver Solberg (SWE)/Aaron Johnston (IRL) Volkswagen Polo GTI R5 1h27m23.0s
2 Mads Østberg (NOR)/Torstein Eriksen (NOR) Citroën C3 R5 +20.1s
3 Alexey Lukyanuk (RUS)/Dmitry Eremeev (RUS) Citroën C3 R5 +37.2s
4 Eerik Pietarinen (FIN)/Antti Linnaketo (FIN) Škoda Fabia R5 +1m34.1s
5 Craig Breen (IRL)/Paul Nagle (IRL) Hyundai i20 R5 +1m51.3s
6 Emil Lindholm (FIN)/Mikael Korhonen (FIN) Škoda Fabia Rally2 Evo +1m53.1s
7 Grégoire Munster (LUX)/Louis Louka (BEL) Hyundai i20 R5 +2m19.7s
8 Mikko Heikkilä (FIN)/Henri Arpiainen (FIN) Škoda Fabia Rally2 Evo +2m35.9s
9 Efrén Llarena (ESP)/Sara Fernández (ESP) Citroën C3 R5 +3m23.2s
10 Sean Johnston (DEU)/Alex Kihurani (GBR) Citroën C3 +3m48.1s
11 Raul Jeets (EST)/Andrus Toom (EST) Škoda Fabia R5 +3m57.4s
12 Erik Cais (CZE)/Jindřiška Žáková (CZE) Ford Fiesta R5 MkII +4m17.6s
13 Miko Marczyk (POL)/Szymon Gospodarczyk (POL) Škoda Fabia Rally2 Evo +4m42.0
14 Dominik Dinkel (DEU)/Ursula Mayrhofer (AUT) Škoda Fabia Rally2 Evo +5m08.0s
15 Niki Mayr-Melnhof (AUT)/Poldi Welsersheimb (AUT) Ford Fiesta R5 MkII +6m02.3s
FIA ERC2: Tibor Érdi Jr (HUN)/Szabolcs Kovács (HUN) Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X
FIA ERC3: Ken Torn (EST)/Kauri Pannas (EST) Ford Fiesta Rally4
FIA ERC1 Junior: Oliver Solberg (SWE)/Aaron Johnston (IRL) Volkswagen Polo GTI R5
FIA ERC3 Junior: Ken Torn (EST)/Kauri Pannas (EST) Ford Fiesta Rally4
Abarth Rally Cup: Martin Rada (CZE)/Jaroslav Jugas (CZE) Abarth 124 rally
Gape linked PDF for facts
ERC rally wins in 2020: Lukyanuk and Solberg 1
ERC stage wins in 2020: Lukyanuk 7; Crugnola and Solberg 6; Basso 3; Østberg 2; Gryazin 1
CHAMPIONSHIP POSITIONS: Click on right here the provisional positions after 2/6.
What’s next? Round 3 of 6, Azores Rallye, 17-19 September: Per the mid-Atlantic Ocean archipelago’s largest island of São Miguel, the rally turns 55 in 2020 and stays one of basically the most spectacular occasions on the global calendar. Stages criss-corrupt breath-taking surroundings and plush geographical region and are characterised by their sandy surface and narrow and undulating nature. And since the timed tests are most often no wider than the width of a car, there is merely no margin for error, in particular on the Sete Cidades test along the rim of a volcanic crater lake. Moody climate will almost definitely be a speak with stipulations switching from sunshine to showers and fog patches