OMV Xsaras set some impressive times

OMV Xsaras set some impressive timesFrom Citroen Press [ 26/06/2005 ].
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Even though the beginning of this year’s Acropolis Rally wasn’t to the liking of the OMV World Rally Team – the ending proved to be rather satisfying. After his retirement on the first day Manfred Stohl proved on leg two and three that he definitely can compete with the best. Xavi Pons also perfectly accomplished his job. The Spaniard reached an excellent tenth overall place at his premiere in the Citroen Xsara WRC with the OMV World Rally Team.

His goal was to reach the finish and get to know the car. A job that was brilliantly accomplished by neo-OMV-driver Xavi Pons. At his first of six starts with the OMV Team the Spaniard especially impressed with his keen perception. After having finished 13th on the first day he moved up to twelfth place on Saturday and reached the top-10 on the final special stage on Sunday. Thus Pons enabled the OMV World Rally Team and Kronos Racing to hold on to an impressive balance: the private team has finished among the top ten at all five assignments this year.

A thank you to the team

„For Greece it was nearly a perfect rally. We had a few tyre damages but no other troubles. Furthermore we gained valuable race kilometres and were able to improve by each special stage. Of course we’re still far from the limit but we did more than okay for the first time. My thanks go especially to Kronos Racing and my Team Manager Marc van Dalen who have supported me professionally in each and every way “, smiles the newcomer to the OMV World Rally Team.

Brake problems under control

In the end the Acropolis Rally has yet been worth the trip for Manfred Stohl. On the one hand the 32-year-old OMV driver proved on the second day that he can compete with the very best – all in all he exclusively reached top-9-times on the second and third day. On the other hand he was able to test under racing conditions. Stohl: „I think the brake problems are now under control. I’m very confident for Argentina. On the last day I just didn’t want to risk too much for if I had dropped out I would have been the laughing stock of the whole scene.“ The final standings see the OMV World Rally Team in 20th place. But they were able to keep the seventh place in the intermediate ranking of the World Rally Championship.