SS4: Mikkelsen moves back in front

Neuville’s hopes of victory have suffered a huge setback

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By Olivier Ferret

4 November 2011 - 14:50
SS4: Mikkelsen moves back in front

Andreas Mikkelsen has moved back into the lead of the Cyprus Rally, despite completing the repeat of the 24.15-kilometre Koilinia stage with the boot of his ŠKODA UK Motorsport Fabia Super 2000 flapping open and ingesting dust.

Andreas Mikkelsen has moved back into the lead of the Cyprus Rally, despite completing the repeat of the 24.15-kilometre Koilinia stage with the boot of his ŠKODA UK Motorsport Fabia Super 2000 flapping open and ingesting dust.

Mikkelsen, who dropped out of top spot when he spun on the previous stage, reported the problem occurring eight kilometres into the test.

“The back door went open and there was so much dust in the car that it was difficult to see,” said Mikkelsen, who won the stage to open up a lead of 18.7s. “I also thought I was losing power in the stage.”

Thierry Neuville’s hopes of victory – and the Intercontinental Rally Challenge title – have suffered a huge setback after the Belgian picked up a right-rear puncture on his Team Peugeot Belgium-Luxembourg 207 Super 2000, losing almost three minutes in the process.

“We had a puncture in the beginning and after we restart we had a problem with the battery,” said the dejected Belgian. “We try to fix it and go to the finish today.”

Nasser Al-Attiyah, in an M-Sport Ford Fiesta S2000, has moved ahead of IRC title leader Jan Kopecký into second overall after the Czech reported losing time in the dust clouds created by Neuville’s Peugeot.

“There were four or five kilometres when I was completely in the dust, I nearly went off the road,” said the factory ŠKODA driver.

Mark Wallenwein suffered a front-left puncture on his ŠKODA Auto Deutschland Fabia.

Stage five, Salamiou 2, gets underway at 16:10hrs local time.

Pos.TeamCarTime
1 Mikkelsen Andreas / Floene Ola Škoda Fabia S2000 55m26.5s
2 Al-Attiyah N. / Bernacchini G. Ford Fiesta S2000 +18.7s
3 Kopecký Jan / Starý Petr Škoda Fabia S2000 +39.7s
4 Loix Freddy / Dresler Pavel Škoda Fabia S2000 +1m25.2s
5 Sandell Patrik / Parmander S. Škoda Fabia S2000 +1m29.1s
6 Kruuda Karl / Järveoja M. Škoda Fabia S2000 +2m04.0s
7 Neuville T. / Gilsoul Nicolas Peugeot 207 S2000 +2m46.5s
8 Kahle Matthias / Göbel Peter Škoda Fabia S2000 +2m47.8s
9 Arai Toshihiro / Moscatt Dale Subaru Impreza Sti R4 +3m19.1s
10 Thomas Nicos / Loizides A. Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX +4m02.5s
11 Timotheou C. / Laos Pambos Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX +5m34.1s
12 Raoux J. / Magat Laurent Renault Clio R3 +5m55.3s
13 Loucaides Doros / Laos Savvas Peugeot 207 S2000 +6m15.8s
14 Yiangou P. / Christofi L. Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX +6m39.9s
15 Pakkis / Christofi P. Mitsubishi Lancer Evo X +6m42.8s

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