Nasser Al-Attiyah and Matthieu Baumel lead the Andalucía Rally after two of the four legs of the outlet round of the FIA World Cup for Unfavorable-Country Rallies. The Toyota Hilux crew are over a minute sooner than Carlos Sainz and Lucas Cruz, the MINI duo closing in on the lead after claiming this day’s stage victory. Vaidotas Zala and Paulo Fiuza have had a beautiful bustle within the same John Cooper Works Rally and abet third on the mid-level of the occasion.
Al-Attiyah and Baumel have the coolest thing about previous trip of the occasion, the Qatari/French pairing claiming victory in 2020 when the rally ran for the first time prior to being included within the FIA World Cup calendar. Surroundings down the marker from the outset, they received the fast eight kilometre qualifying stage on Wednesday after which plot the quickest time on the day earlier than this day’s 177 kilometre piece. This day, the route headed to the Province of Cordoba and the furthest level away from the bivouac situated shut to Villamartin in eastern Spain. Opening the side toll road for his or her rivals, they got misplaced at one level and dropped a minute, within the slay finishing third within the piece that took the contenders over a aggregate of technical and high-tempo tracks.
Sainz, double FIA World Rally Champion and winner of the Dakar Rally on three instances, is one other returnee to the Andalucía Rally. The Spaniard, with Cruz alongside him within the MINI John Cooper Works Rally, is chasing onerous despite no longer competing in a four-wheel force automobile for a decade. The day earlier than this day, consequently, he lacked self perception to push and carried out third within the piece, 2 minutes and 32 seconds adrift of Al-Attiyah’s winning tempo. This day, nonetheless, he bounced abet; quickest time demonstrating bigger trust within the auto after overnight plot-up adjustments which elevated himself and Cruz to 2nd overall.
Zala and Fiuza were spectacular from the outset, finishing ample three seconds adrift of Al-Attiyah on the qualifying stage. Despite being out of competitors for five months, the Lithuanian/Portuguese crew slotted in precisely on the abet of their rival within the day earlier than this day’s stage to declare 2nd, ample one minute and 25 seconds adrift of the lead despite a pair of spins. This day, it was once a cosmopolitan and lengthy day for the duo with some errors, and apart from they carried out fourth within the piece and dropped to third overall, such was once the tempo of Sainz.
Having misplaced time within the day earlier than this day’s 177 kilometre piece, which resulted in eighth self-discipline overall, Yazeed Al-Rajhi and Dirk von Zitzewitz have climbed the leaderboard and abet fourth overall in their Toyota Hilux Overdrive. The Saudi Arabian driver is one other to have stood on the Andalucía Rally podium, having claimed third final year, and he’s three minutes adrift of Zala despite a late puncture.
Erik van Loon and Sébastien Delaunay made a spectacular recovery from 18th on the qualifying stage to a beautiful fifth within the day earlier than this day’s stage. The Dutch/French Hilux Overdrive crew mirrored that performance all over again this day to abet self-discipline as Al-Rajhi moved up the leaderboard and Vladimir Vasilyev, previously fourth going into this day’s stage, was once forced to retire after an accident.
Guillaume de Mevius and Tom Colsoul are on beautiful form in their OT3 and are sixth overall and first in T3. They have gotten powered up the leaderboard from fourth of the category contenders to leading after the 2nd leg. Eighteen-year-dilapidated American, Seth Quintero, previously led the category after storming to sixth overall in a single other OT3, but was once unable to start this day’s stage following a gearbox topic.
The Portuguese crew of Paulo Ferreira/Jorge Monteiro abet seventh in a single other Toyota Hilux, ample sooner than the MINI John Cooper Works Buggy crew of Mattias Ekström, 2016 FIA World Rallycross Champion, and Emil Bergkvist. Twenty-nine year dilapidated Spaniard Cristina Gutierrez is a ambitious ninth and 2nd in T3 in her OT3 and the Polish/Finnish pairing of Martin Kaczmarski and Tapio Suominen round out the conclude 10. Laia Sanz, furthermore supporting her dwelling round of the FIA World Cup for Unfavorable-Country Rallies, is 11th as she continues to alter to competitors on four wheels.
Qatari Khalifa Al-Attiyah and Frenchman Xavier Panseri head the T4 category in their Can-Am Maverick XRS with two stage wins to their name. They head Austin Jones/Gustavo Gugelmin within the classification with Aron Domzala – who received his category in Spain final year – 2nd on this day’s stage after rolling the day earlier than this day.