Subaru World Rally Team Leg one - Summary

16.02.2007: Subaru World Rally Team Leg one - Summary

WRC RALLYES - Rally Norway, Leg One 16 February 2007

After leg one of Rally Norway, Petter is fourth, Chris ninth

At the end of day one of Rally Norway, the Subaru World Rally Team has one car firmly in the points and the other just outside the top eight. The cars have returned to the Viking Ship, Hamar, at the end of the leg, and Petter Solberg, on his home event, is in fourth place at the end of a positive day during which he made a deliberately steady start and battled up the order in the afternoon. Chris Atkinson spent most of the day getting used to the conditions and ended up ninth, just a few seconds off eighth place.

Starters

74 crews left the service park inside the Viking Ship, Hamar, for Leg One of the inaugural Rally Norway.

Route

The opening day of competition was based to the south east of Hamar and took the crews as far south as the town of Kongsvinger, more than 100km from Hamar. The leg comprised eight stages, of which only one test, Loten, was used twice. Due to the lengthy road sections during the day, the crews visited a Remote Service Zone at Kirkenaer just after 1300hrs.

Weather

The temperature hovered around freezing point throughout the opening day of Rally Norway, although wind chill made it seem much colder. There were intermittent showers of snow out on the stages.

No major retirements

 

Team Quotes

Subaru World Rally Team Managing Director, Richard Taylor: "We’re very pleased with Petter’s performance today. He’s ended in a strong fourth place, which is right on target, and where we expected him to be at this stage of the rally. Chris has had a tougher time but we have to remember that although this is his fourth snow rally, all of his experience has been on the Swedish Rally and conditions here are very different.

It’s much more technical, tight and twisty and he has to get used to that with the car. We’ve had great performance from our BFGoodrich tyres throughout the leg. Overall we’re satisfied with the positions of both drivers at this stage of the rally and looking forward to the rest of the event."

 

Driver Quotes

Petter Solberg: "It’s been very good today. I’m very happy with the result, fourth is not a bad position to be in at the end of the first leg. We have been working very hard to get through the day without any major problems, and the only thing that has happened is the bent steering on SS6 when we hit something.

Driving in front of all these people is such an unbelievable feeling and I’m looking forward to the next two days of the rally. We’ve been building up our confidence and if things continue to go this way I think we can challenge for the podium, but our main objective is to finish this rally. That is important for the rest of our season."

Chris Atkinson: "It hasn’t been a perfect day for us, but it is good to get to the end of the first leg and we’re still in ninth place. There’s a lot more to come and we can try to move up into the points during the weekend. It hasn’t been easy today.

We’re struggling with the balance of the car and it feels a lot different to Sweden last weekend, where we were able to push quite hard. If we can make everything right for tomorrow, we can be fast on any stage."  

Tomorrow's Leg

For the second leg of Rally Norway, the crews head north and east of Hamar for six stages, none of which are repeated during the day, although four of the tests are used again during Leg Three.

Of Saturday’s action, SS11 (Mountain) is the northernmost stage of the event. The opening stage, Elverum, commences at 0809hrs. Competitors return to the Viking Ship indoor service area at Hamar at 1027hrs.

 

- Subaru -

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16.02.2007 / MaP

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