Flying Scotsman scorches the stages at Neste Oil Finland Rally

Flying Scotsman scorches the stages at Neste Oil Finland Rally

19.08.2006: Flying Scotsman scorches the stages at Neste Oil Finland Rally

Neste Oil Rally Finland - Fiesta SportingTrophy International, round 5/6

Scot Barry Clark continued to extend his lead in the Fiesta SportingTrophy International (FSTi) on day two of Neste Oil Rally Finland. Clark and co-driver Scott Martin completed the 145 km without any dramas, finishing the day having been fastest on four of the eight stages with a lead of almost 3 minutes.

TRT La Scuderia supported Alessandro Bettega maintained his second place throughout but slowed his pace dramatically to ensure that he finishes this very tough and specialised event. The points for second place would mean that he will become the first person to win the Fiesta SportingTrophy International and the prize of a supported drive in the FIA Junior World Rally Championship in 2007.

Overnight Evgeny Vertunov was in third place but at the end of the leg the Stewardís excluded him from the event under a safety regulation when his co-driver was found to not be wearing the correct fireproof under clothing. The Russian was visibly upset when he left the service park to begin the trip home.

Gilles Schammel benefited from Vertunovís exclusion and regained third place as a result. The man from Luxembourg was starting to dream of a podium position in Finland when a driveshaft broke just as he left service. He will return tomorrow although with SupeRally penalties.

After their problems on Friday, FSTi visitor Joni Arpiainen and series regular Kalle Keskinen both progressed through the field to finish the day third and fourth respectively. When Arpiainen got a puncture only 500 metres into stage 14, Ouninpohja Lšnsi, he elected to drive on for the remaining 14 km on the rim and yet only dropped 1 minute 30 seconds to the others. Keskinen had a trouble free day conducting only routine part replacements and spanner checks at service to finish the leg in fourth position.

On her first visit to this tricky event Kiwi Emma Gilmour was fastest Fiesta ST on two of the four Ouninpohja tests and second and third quickest on the other two - beating both Finns on this loop of their world famous roller coaster stages. She revelled in the fast sweeping nature of these roads and was constantly catching slower cars in front of her in the stages. After this impressive performance luck dealt a cruel blow on Saturdayís last stage when her engine lost all oil pressure, possibly due to an earlier heavy landing, leaving her and co driver Claire Mole stranded in the stage. An assessment on whether she can restart under SupeRally regulations will be taken when the car returns to the service park.

Frenchman Mathieu Biasionís dreadful luck over the last two weeks continued on the second leg. Running way down the order due to his SupeRally penalties he started well with a fastest time on the morningís early stage but over shot a junction on stage 11 and collided with a parked car. This caused considerable damage to the driverís side of the Fiesta ST. The Trophy is hotly contested on the stages yet when Biasionís car needed intensive repair at the first service, technicians from three other teams lent a hand to ensure that he left with his car working and on time.

Sunday sees the final leg of Neste Oil Rally Finland with 60 km of competitive distance over four stages. This distance must be completed without any service break and with Clark hoping for his first win in the series and Bettega hoping to clinch the Trophy nerves will be jangling until the cars return to the Ceremonial Finish at 15:10 local time.

Barry Clark #53 Iíve thoroughly enjoyed today. Our position is difficult as we have to keep it in the middle of the road and not make any mistakes. I have a healthy lead in the FSTi but need to keep pushing in the Rookie JWRC for more points so I have to keep the speed up whilst being careful.

Alessandro Bettega #97 Iím driving really slowly, really steady but the day is perfect. I need to take it easy for the Trophy and I only need to clip a rock like Biasion yesterday and Iím in SupeRally, 5 minutes per stage and I will have thrown it away. It is hard to drive slowly. I need to try and keep concentrating and drive in the middle of the road. We amended our notes on the stages we have to repeat to make sure we avoid any hazards. Iím getting bored now. I am not enjoying driving slowly and seeing the stage times depresses me. I hope we can win the Trophy here as I want to go to Wales Rally GB and then I can go crazy.

Kalle Keskinen #98 On the first stage I was driving outside the road all of the time. On the run first Ouininpohja I was fastest but I wanted to go 20 seconds faster on the next run round but I ended up slower. There was a vibration from the car at service so we changed the driveshafts as a precaution and it was better.

Joni Arpiainen #99 I like it, the stages are really good. It is so much better than yesterday that I can drive the car really lightly and let things flow. On the first Ouininpohja I was quite nervous, but now it is OK. I jumped 25 metres on the last one and the Fiesta lands really well. I got a puncture 500 metres into stage 14. It was a huge big sharp rock and I couldnít avoid it. We drove for the rest of the stage and only lost a minute and a half. A Fiesta can still jump when it only has air in three tyres.

Mathieu Biasion #100 In the second stage this morning I came over a crest and Cedric called a right hand corner but the route went left. There was a car parked in the road and I hit it. All the teamís mechanics did a good job and the car goes well now. Iím enjoying this beautiful rally, the stages are great. I donít care anymore we just want to go fast.

Gilles Schammel #101 It has been better than yesterday. The stages are not just so fast but getting the line right is very difficult. The driveshaft broke when they were just leaving service, I thought the tiramisu was very good for lunch and I wanted to come back for more!"

Emma Gilmour #104 This has been good fun. I am catching the car in front. On each of the last two stages we had to pass him and it is costing us some time. Itís strange that you worry about the crests on the stages and forget about the speed, then all of a sudden you see how fast you are travelling. Itís good to see that on the most famous stage in the world, Ouininpohja I can set a fastest time. I have beaten the Finns on every stage on that loop. They wonít be speaking to me! The two fastest stage times mean a lot. Claire shouted Ďcaution crestí in the last one and I couldnít see why I had to be careful and kept powering on. The road then just disappeared and we flew for ages with a big bang when we landed.

- Andy Stobart-
photos copyright ISC Ltd London 2006  by Luc Depiesse


19.08.2006 / MaP

More News

Clark leads flying Fiestas in Finland.
Fiesta SportingTrophy International, round 5/6 at Neste Oil Rally Finland Scot Barry Clark leads the Fiesta SportingTrophy International (FSTi) after the opening leg of Neste Oil Rally Finland following a day long battle with series points leader Alessandro Bettega. Clark has been fastest more >>
FSTi: Athanassoulas wins and Gilles Schammel fastest time
more than 4.000 photos online on under PHOTOS -WRC RallyesGreek driver Lambros Athanassoulas claimed his first win in the Fiesta SportingTrophy International (FSTi) series, as well as winning the N3 Class overall after three hard days on OMV ADAC Rallye Deutschland, taking the win by 21.6 seconds from championship and early rally leader Alessand more >>
Fiesta STs blast the military ranges OMV ADAC Rallye Deutschland
Fiesta SportingTrophy International, round 4/6 Greek driver Lambros Athanassoulas snatched the lead of the fourth round of the Fiesta SportingTrophy International (FSTi) on OMV ADAC Rallye Deutschland when drama stuck the then rally leader, Alessandro Bettega, right at the entrance to final servi more >>
Gilmour makes FSTi debut at Deutschland Rallye
FIESTA SPORTING TROPHY -OMV ADAC Rallye Deutschland Friday August 11    Kiwi rally driver Emma Gilmour had her first taste of the Fiesta SportingTrophy International (FSTi) as OMV ADAC Rallye Deutschland got underway to variable weather conditions over eight stages held in the Mosel vineyards of the Saarland region of Germany. Gilmour more >>
Stobart VK-M-Sport Ford Rally Team at OMV ADAC Rallye Deutschland, 11-13 August
Friday August 11, leg oneFIA World Rally Championship, round 9/16 The Stobart VK M-Sport Ford Rally Team endured a trying first day to OMV ADAC Rallye Deutschland with treacherous wet weather conditions making the Mosel vineyard stages a virtual ice rink at times and tyre choi more >>
Fiesta SportingTrophy International heads to Germany
Fiesta SportingTrophy International, round 4/6 OMV ADAC Rallye Deutschland   The second half of the Fiesta SportingTrophy International (FSTi) season gets underway with this weekendís fourth round of the series on OMV ADAC Rallye Deutschland. Itís set to be another close battle in the one make rally, with the prize of a supported drive in the more >>
Moore wins FST UK Swansea dust-up.
22th July 2006 Fiesta SportingTrophy UK, round 5/8   It was a case of dust, dust, dust as Chris Moore dusted off the opposition in the fifth round of the Fiesta SportingTrophy UK on the Swansea Bay Clubmans Rally with a blinder of a time on the final stage to take victory on the hot, dry and dusty gravel event. Moore started the d more >>
Fiesta SportingTrophy go to Swansea Bay.
Given the UKís current heat-wave itís appropriate that the VK Vodka Kick backed Fiesta SportingTrophy UK, Britainís most hotly contested single-make rally series, should head to a seaside base for the fifth round of the championship, the Swansea Bay Rally. Although Rally HQ is located within easy reach of Swanseaís picturesque beaches the Swansea Bay is a gravel rally using fores more >>
Barry Clark looks to Isle of Man.
Clark puts problems at home behind him. Scotsman Barry Clark canít wait for the next round of the Tesco 99 Octane MSA British Rally Championship as the series takes in its second tarmac rally of the year with Rally Isle of Man. Despite having lost his lead of the S1600 class of the BRC at his home event, the Jim Clark Rally, due to problems with h more >>
Fiesta SportingTrophy UK, round 4/8 - Huge lift for Hughes at the Jim Clark Rally
Jim Clark Fiesta Rally Saturday July 8th Simon Hughes took an impressive victory in the fourth round of the VK Vodka Kick backed Fiesta SportingTrophy UK series on the Jim Clark Rally, scoring valuable points for his championship campaign for the first time since the opening round and moving him into third in the standings behind Kevin Davies and new championship more >>
FST UK ready for first tarmac test
The Jim Clark Rally will be the first tarmac rally of the exciting VK Vodka Kick supported Fiesta SportingTrophy UK (FST UK) as the championship reaches its half way mark on the roads around Kelso, south east of Edinburgh. Leading the way is Welshman Kevin Davies who has yet to win an event but whose championship lead comes from a consistent second place and two thirds. more >>
Severn Rally Clubmans Rally - Fiesta time in sun drenched Wales
Fiesta SportingTrophy UK, round 3/8Saturday June 3 Ė for immediate release A hot and dusty Severn Valley Clubmans Rally set the scene for a thrilling round three in the Fiesta SportingTrophy UK (FST UK). Competitors battled it out over the famous fast stages used by some o more >>
FST UK puts a Kick into the Severn Valley.
The third round of the exciting Fiesta SportingTrophy UK (FST UK) takes place this coming weekend with the Severn Valley Clubmans Rally where 23 Ford Fiesta ST rally cars in the VK Vodka Kick supported series will trade times over the Forestry Commission plantations of Mid& Wales. It's just two weeks since the FST UK cars were out in action on the Pirelli Trophy Rally more >>
Bettega wins at home and takes championship lead
Alessandro Bettega scored a class and Fiesta victory in his home rally and moved into the drivers' points lead in the Fiesta SportingTrophy International (FSTi), the series for GpN Ford Fiesta STs which runs alongside rounds of the FIA Junior World Rally Championship. Bettega and co-driver Simone Scatto more >>
Home favourite stays top but rivals close
Alessandro Bettega ended the second day of action in Rally d'Italia Sardegna in the lead of the Fiesta SportingTrophy International, but an epic battle was played out through the course of the day where he had dropped as low as fourth in the standings and the top three Fiestas ended the day with just over a min more >>
Bettega best after first day
Alessandro Bettega ended the first day of Rally d'Italia Sardegna ahead of his rivals after a day of six gruelling gravel stages in the third round of the Fiesta SportingTrophy International (FSTi). Bettega fought back from fifth in the standings at the end of the first loop and drove at a pace designe more >>
Fiesta Sporting Trophy International heads to Sardinia.
more >>
Evgeniy Vertunov Russia   Kalle Keskinen Finland more >>
Race Calendar 2006 - Fiesta Sporting Trophy
Rally Catalunya 24 March 2006 Tarmac Rallye de France - Tour de Corse 07 April 2006 Tarmac Supermag Rally Italia Sardinia 19 May 2006 Gravel OMV ADAC Rallye Deutschland 11 August 2006 Tarmac Neste Rally Finland 18 August 2006 Gravel Wales Rally GB 01 December 2006 Gravel - Andy Stobart - more >>

Simon Hughes more >>


2001-2021 full copyright