1973-1921 - Alpine wins another International Rally title

1973-1921 - Alpine wins another International Rally title

18.10.2021: • Forty-eight years after winning the first-ever FIA World Rally Championship, Alpine reaches new heights by winning the FIA RGT Cup with Pierre Ragues.

•    Forty-eight years after winning the first-ever FIA World Rally Championship, Alpine reaches new heights by winning the FIA RGT Cup with Pierre Ragues.


•    Following its first overall wins in France and over the world, the Alpine A110 Rally claims its first international title on RallyRACC - Rally de España.


•    Alpine dominated the FIA RGT Cup, winning every round and special stage on the calendar to extend its unbeaten run that began on ACI Rally Monza last December.


 


Less than a year after winning its first national title since returning to rallying, Alpine had already sealed its first international title for the first time since the inaugural season of the FIA World Rally Championship in 1973.


 
The only question remaining was which driver the A-arrow brand would take the crown as Pierre Ragues and Manu Guigou each won twice this year. However, the two men approached the Spanish round with different approaches. On the one hand, Pierre Ragues could afford to control the action until the finish to take the title whereas his countryman had to finish on the podium and see where his rival would end up.



Manu Guigou, who won the last time out on Rally Nova Gorica, announced his intentions on the opening loop on Friday, with the best time on the first three stages. He then put in a repeat performance in the afternoon to take a 2:52.6s lead over his rival, who received a one-minute penalty for checking in too early.


On the tarmac roads of the Costa Daurada, the reigning 2WD French Champion kept pushing with a grand slam on the seven timed sectors of Saturday, but Pierre Ragues found an ideal compromise between control and attack with the Alpine A110 to maintain his second place ahead of Philippe Baffoun.



On Sunday, Manu Guigou continued his domination in the final leg, battling with several Rally2s while Pierre Ragues was in control of his fate. While his rival eventually won the FIA RGT Cup and the two-wheel-drive category with a 6:33.3s margin of victory, Pierre Ragues secured the title by finishing second ahead of Philippe Baffoun in an all Alpine podium.  



With two wins, two runner-up finishes and a fourth-place result, Pierre Ragues becomes the first driver to win an international rally title with Alpine. After winning the European Le Mans Series and securing a podium finish at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in the brand's endurance programme, the Normandy-born driver has also shown a versatility that would make Jean Rédélé proud.



His title is the icing on the cake in what has been an incredible 2021 season for the Alpine-Signatech designed A110 Rally, which has left its mark on the FIA RGT Cup with 76 - another nod to Dieppe! - stage wins over the season. Alpine dominated the competition with a one-two finish in Rome, one-two-three results at Nova Gorica and Catalonia, a sweep of the top five on the Monte Carlo Rally and a lockout of the top six at Ypres!




Pierre Ragues


"Words cannot express what a special feeling this is to win the FIA RGT Cup during a WRC weekend. I am incredibly proud to be representing Alpine and Michelin in rallying, and to be an ambassador for two such iconic brands. This is a super important and valuable title for all of us, and one that I proudly add to the ELMS title I won with Alpine in 2013.


It was a stressful rally because we knew we just had to just keep the car on the road, but this was my first time at Rally de España, so it was also a learning curve. We didn’t want to take any risks but that’s easier said than done at such a high level of competition.


The car, of course, was perfect – it gives me the confidence I need to deliver. I had wonderful support again from Julien, who I can share this result with, and excellent colleagues at Racing Services.




From my first victory with the Alpine A110 Rally in Monza late last year, and now a complete season in RGT, it has been a dream come true. We have competed in some legendary events, as part of the WRC, and taken away two victories this year at Ypres and Rome. I share this result also with my incredible partners and this is a day I will treasure."
 



CLASSIFICATIONS


2021 RallyRACC - Rally de España – FIA RGT

1.      Manu Guigou-Florian Barral (Alpine A110 Rally) 2h50:35.7s
2.      Pierre Ragues-Julien Pesenti (Alpine A110 Rally) +6:33.3s
3.      Philippe Baffoun-Marine Delon (Alpine A110 Rally) +14:03.2s



2021 FIA RGT Cup


1.       Pierre Ragues 98 points
2.      Manu Guigou 93 points
3.      Philippe Baffoun 64 points
4.      Raphaël Astier & Stefaan Prinzie 18 points
6.      Cédric Robert, Dariusz Polońsk & Marc Duez 15 points…



SIGNATURE  photos Alpine

Permanent-URL: http://www.automobilsport.com/alpine-wins-international-rally-title-spain-espana---230069.html

18.10.2021 / MaP

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