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Rally of Mexico: Pirelli Sparkles as ...
|03.2006 Rally of Mexico: Pirelli Sparkles as Subaru Returns to Brilliant Form
Leon, 5 March 2006
After a modest start to the season, Pirelli and Subaru were back fighting for victory in Mexico. The Japanese manufacturer's number one driver, Petter Sol-berg, monopolised the lead for much of the rally - in practice until the end of the second leg - before having to give way to Sébastien Loeb's comeback and also due to power steering problems after hitting a rock. The result of the third round in the World Rally Championship is, however, more than positive and underlines the rapid improvement in performance and reliability of the Impreza WRC, well backed up by its P Zero tyres, which were decidedly effective on the Mexican gravel. The considerable degree of competitivity of Pirelli tyres in Mexico was also confirmed by the first and second places scored by the Milan-made tyres in Group N, in which the Subaru Imprezas of Toshihiro Arai and Nasser Al-Attiyah dominated the category from on high with unquestioned superiority.
While not being able to once again score the magnificent victory he achieved one year ago on the same Mexican special stages, Petter Solberg was pleased and said, "The tremen-dous commitment of Subaru and Pirelli in recent weeks immediately bore fruit and I am decidedly pleased with the performance of the P Zeros, especially the K2Evo variant. I would have certainly liked to win, but recuperating competitiveness and reliability is al-ready sufficient to mean I'm looking forward to the Rally of Spain with impatience".
Mario Isola, Rally Manager of Pirelli Competizioni, confirms the Norwegian driver's re-marks, commenting favourably on this Rally of Mexico, saying, "I am, naturally, pleased with the overall performance of the Pirelli P Zeros, especially the new K2Evo.
The positive result obtained today in a rally that showed itself to be so hard on tyres and the evi-dence of the good work carried out by our development staff is certainly an invaluable in-jection of confidence for the whole Subaru team. I would also like to underline the ex-treme robustness of the P Zeros in Mexico, which translated into the absolute supremacy of Pirelli in Group N. In a category in which we compete without anti-puncture "mousse", the P Zero won 15 of the 17 special stages thanks to the Subarus of Arai and Al-Attiyah".
The next round in the WRC Championship is the Rally of Spain-Catalonia (24-26 March).
Mexico Rally's final classification, WRC 2006 Event nr. 03:
1. Loeb (Citroën) 3h47'08''8
2. Solberg (Subaru) + 48''9
3. Stohl (Peugeot) +4'39''1
4. Sordo (Citroën) +5'27''7
9. Arai (Subaru, 1. Gr. N) +22'34''6
11.Al-Attiyah (Subaru, 2. Gr.N) +23'23''5