Day 1 am: Rovanpera's morning

Harri Rovanpera's improved form continued in Cyprus this morning as he took fastest time in both the first two stages. The Finn made the most of his 11th position on the road to take his Peugeot into the lead at the halfway point of Day One, which involves just four stages in total.

Day 1 am: Rovanpera's morning

As expected, cars starting in lowly positions have featured strongly on the leaderboard. Surprises include Gilles Panizzi (supposed tarmac specialist) being second overall after the two stages.

Subaru have been most impressive, with Makinen and Solberg in 3rd and 4th places at the lunch break, despite running 5th and 8th on the stage.

The likes of Marcus Gronholm, Markko Martin, Richard Burns (who had a minor puncture) and Carlos Sainz are struggling in 5th, 6th, 10th and 15th respectively.

"I'm happy just to have got back here because conditions are just as rough as we expected them to be," said Martin. "Having a two-hour break here at the regroup and not going near any twisty roads sounds great to me!"

An early retirement is Justin Dale (on his Hyundai debut) with an overheating engine. His team-mate Armin Schwarz also reported suspension damage on SS2, the extent of which is not yet known.

Francois Duval of Ford lost a good deal of time on SS2 (the longest of the rally at 38km) when he lost his automatic gearchange. He's almost a hundred seconds down on Rovanpera and in 16th position.

The remaining two stages today are reruns of the opening two, so the issue of running early on the road should be of far less importance as they have been "cleaned" by the field. Look for the pre-event favourites to make a move towards the top of the leaderboard.


shares
comments
Peugeot admits 307 WRC is running late

Previous article

Peugeot admits 307 WRC is running late

Next article

Taking the rough with the smooth

Taking the rough with the smooth
Load comments
How Finland’s newest rally hero made WRC history in Estonia Plus

How Finland’s newest rally hero made WRC history in Estonia

Kalle Rovanpera broke a decade-old record in becoming the World Rally Championship's youngest-ever winner in a truly dominant performance on Estonia's fast gravel roads. Staving off the challenge of Hyundai's Craig Breen, his committed drive showed a maturity beyond his 20 years that gives Toyota's post-Ogier era a far brighter complexion

WRC
Jul 19, 2021
How WRC's new Safari adventure ended with a familiar tale Plus

How WRC's new Safari adventure ended with a familiar tale

The World Rally Championship’s delayed return to the Safari Rally was always set throw up some surprises, but aside from a spirited showing by Thierry Neuville it became another painful event for Hyundai in 2021. Once again it was Sebastien Ogier who took full advantage as he completed a stunning comeback drive

WRC
Jun 28, 2021
Remembering Colin McRae’s final WRC win Plus

Remembering Colin McRae’s final WRC win

The Safari Rally returns to the World Rally Championship this weekend for the first time since 2002 - when crowd favourite Colin McRae set aside the maximum attack style for which he was renowned to deliver a textbook third win

WRC
Jun 23, 2021
How Hyundai's broken record gave Toyota a special Sardinia 1-2 Plus

How Hyundai's broken record gave Toyota a special Sardinia 1-2

For the second WRC gravel rally in a row, a promising Friday for Hyundai turned into desolation as Toyota gratefully picked up the pieces. This time it was championship leader Sebastien Ogier who took full advantage after Ott Tanak and Dani Sordo retired to score a memorable victory, having swept the road on the first two days

WRC
Jun 7, 2021
How Hyundai's latest self-destruction handed Evans Portugal victory Plus

How Hyundai's latest self-destruction handed Evans Portugal victory

At one point Hyundai held the top three positions in Portugal, but when trouble struck the Korean marque's two leading chargers, a grateful Elfyn Evans was on hand to see off Hyundai third man Dani Sordo and become the third different winner in four rallies

WRC
May 24, 2021
Why the success of AVB's WRC debut won't be defined on the stages Plus

Why the success of AVB's WRC debut won't be defined on the stages

Three years after a Dakar Rally crash resulted in him being airlifted to hospital, Andre Villas-Boas is preparing to make his debut on his home round of the World Rally Championship later this month. His goals for the event are modest, but the same cannot be said for the charities he plans to promote where his true impact could be felt

WRC
May 13, 2021
Why there's no easy fix for Hyundai's operational Achilles Heel Plus

Why there's no easy fix for Hyundai's operational Achilles Heel

Hyundai Motorsport boss Andrea Adamo was vocal in his criticism of his team's tyre choices on Rally Croatia and declared that he "had better move my ass and solve it". Doing so will be vital to getting Hyundai's 2021 WRC title hopes back on track, but finding the root of the problem won't be the work of a moment

WRC
Apr 28, 2021
How Ogier held on after a shock bump in the road to triumph in Croatia Plus

How Ogier held on after a shock bump in the road to triumph in Croatia

Sebastien Ogier was already in an incredibly tight fight at Rally Croatia before a surprise collision with public road traffic at the start of the final day. But the defending champion held his nerve to take a narrow victory and create further World Rally Championship history

WRC
Apr 26, 2021