SS10: Kopecky slows, Bouffier crashes
Mikkelsen takes first stage win
There was drama on Sunday morning’s opening stage when leader Jan Kopecký suffered powersteering failure in his ŠKODA Fabia, while Bryan Bouffier damaged his Peugeot 207 going off the road.
Kopecký began the stage with an advantage of 19.7s but his lead is now down to 5.6s over fellow ŠKODA driver Freddy Loix, who was second through the stage held on damp roads following overnight rain.
With two more stages until service in Otrokovice, Kopecký is expected to lose even more time. “I am out of powersteering so we will see,” said Kopecký. “I don’t know if I can survive the next two stages, I’m definitely losing the first place and maybe the podium.”
Juho Hänninen was 0.6s slower than Loix through the test and drops into third place on the Intercontinental Rally Challenge event. The Finn heads the drivers’ standings after winning three rounds of the series so far this year.
Bryan Bouffier, who started the stage in fourth overall, went off the road two kilometres from the stage finish. Thierry Neuville, who was running behind him on the road, reported the Peugeot France car had lost a wheel striking a boulder.
Neuville was satisfied with his performance in his Team Peugeot Belgium-Luxembourg 207 after setting a time 4.5s slower than Loix: “For me it was quite okay, the set-up was better.”
Andreas Mikkelsen, who has moved up to fifth, was fastest through the stage in his ŠKODA UK Motorsport Fabia.
Guy Wilks has moved into the top 10 in his Peugeot 207, one place behind PROTON Satria Neo driver PG Andersson. Craig Breen is up to seventh in his M-Sport Ford Fiesta.
|1||Kopecký Jan / Starý Petr||Škoda Fabia S2000||1h27m10.6s|
|2||Loix Freddy / Miclotte F.||Škoda Fabia S2000||+5.6s|
|3||Hänninen Juho / Markkula Mikko||Škoda Fabia S2000||+6.2s|
|4||Neuville T. / Gilsoul Nicolas||Peugeot 207 S2000||+1m40.0s|
|5||Mikkelsen Andreas / Floene Ola||Škoda Fabia S2000||+1m53.7s|
|6||Gardemeister T. / Suominen Tapio||Škoda Fabia S2000||+2m26.9s|
|7||Breen Craig / Roberts Gareth||Ford Fiesta S2000||+2m45.1s|
|8||Kresta Roman / Gross Petr||Škoda Fabia S2000||+2m54.3s|
|9||Andersson P. / Axelsson Emil||Proton Satria Neo S2000||+3m02.0s|
|10||Wilks Guy / Pugh Phil||Peugeot 207 S2000||+3m13.3s|
|11||Sołowow Michal / Baran Maciej||Ford Fiesta S2000||+3m23.0s|
|12||Kruuda Karl / Järveoja M.||Škoda Fabia S2000||+3m25.9s|
|13||Barrable Robert / Connolly Damien||Škoda Fabia S2000||+3m47.4s|
|14||Sandell Patrik / Parmander S.||Škoda Fabia S2000||+3m51.0s|
|15||Basso G. / Dotta Mitia||Proton Satria Neo S2000||+4m10.4s|