By José Luis Abreu on 8 September 2022 09:05
Ott Tänak/Martin Järveoja (Hyundai i20 N Rally1) keep the momentum brought from two victories in the last two rallies, in Finland and Belgium and put their Hyundai ahead of the Shakedown of Acropolis Rally.
The Estonian driver wasted no time in following suit, and set a benchmark time in his third and final race, stopping the clock three tenths of a second faster than Thierry Neuville/Martijn Wydaeghe (Hyundai i20 N Rally1).
The conditions were hot, dry and dusty which characterizes the rally in exactly the same way, logically Pirelli’s Scorpion solid tire compound was the tire of choice not only for this shakedown but for the entire rally.
Although the grip was easy to find as more cars passed, hard rock was also exposed, and that would be one of the biggest dangers of this race, as it was in the past: “The roads were not that bad. “, explained Tanak: “In some areas there was a good grip, but in other areas the grip is less”. It will not be an easy meeting and I think tomorrow especially it will be very difficult”.
Craig Breen/Paul Nagle (Ford Puma Rally1), winners of Acropolis Rally 2014, when he was part of ERC, were third ahead of Dani Sordo/Candido Carrera (Hyundai i20 N Rally1) while the Irishman was squeezed by Hyundai cars.
Esapekka Lappi/Janne Ferm (Toyota GR Yaris Rally1) was the best driver for Toyota Gazoo Racing and placed his GR Yaris in the Top 5, beating Kalle Rovanperä/Jonne Halttunen (Toyota GR Yaris Rally1) who could have won the driver’s title. week, but it has to surpass Tänak, and everyone else, by at least 18 points to do so. It doesn’t seem easy, but you never know.
Sébastien Loeb/Isabelle Galmiche (Ford Puma Rally1) completed two runs before their Puma suffered engine hiccup problems. The Frenchman switched off the engine to prevent further damage and his M-Sport Ford team took the car back into service to try and fix the problem ahead of tonight’s start, when the rally gets underway in competition.
- Ott Tanak Hyundai I20 N 2min 37.9s
- Thierry Neuville Hyundai I20 N +0.3s
- Craig Breen Ford Puma +0.9s
- Dani Sordo Hyundai I20 N +1.1s
- Esapekka Lappi Toyota Gr Yaris +1.4s
- Kalle Rovanpera Toyota Gr Yaris +1.7s
- Pierre-Louis Loubet Ford Puma +2.1s
- Elfin Evans Toyota Gr Yaris +2.2s
- Gus Greensmith Ford Puma +2.4s
- Sébastien Loeb Ford Puma +4.0s