OMV confident after shakedown

OMV confident after shakedownFrom Peugeot Press [ 30/11/2006 ].
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The OMV Peugeot Norway World Rally Team continued the successful performances of the last months during the shakedown to the “Wales Rally GB”. The Norwegian OMV Team Henning Solberg and Cato Menkerud reached third-best time. Manfred Stohl and Ilka Minor (Aut) finished in sixth place. The testing done last Monday, when about 100 kilometres were completed at full speed near Resolfen also makes them very confident.

Solberg feels right at home
Henning Solberg had a lot of fun during the shakedown of the Walse Rally GB. A fact that showed in the achieved result. The 33-year-old Norwegian reached third-best time by 2:23,3 minutes on the 3,9 kilometres long course. The only ones faster were Henning’s brother Petter (Subaru) and Ford works driver Mikko Hirvonen (Fin). Solberg: “It felt really good. We had any amount of fun. This rally really is something special. I think that we have a perfectly set-up car and will be able to compete with the best from Friday to Sunday. Weather conditions are to our advantage. When it gets slippery our experience comes into play.” OMV Peugeot Norway Teammate Manfred Stohl also really put his foot down during the shakedown. A time of 2:24,1 meant that he was only 0,8 seconds slower than Henning. Stohl: “The first two turns were okay. But then the lane grooves got very deep and big rocks were on the street. It doesn’t make sense to ride an attack then. I’d rather keep that back for the rally.”

Successful testing
In order to be perfectly prepared for the last run to the FIA World Rally Championship, a day of testing was had been held on Monday near Resolfen. Both OMV crews completed 100 kilometres each and were exultant afterwards. Stohl: “Conditions were exactly like we expect them to be at the rally. We tested several set-ups and I’m sure that we have found the right one. Now our car also performs very well when conditions get slippery. Which means that we have a basis for a good result at the season’s finale.”

Shakedown results
1. Petter Solberg/Mills (Nor) Subaru Impreza WRC 2:22,6 min.
1. Mikko Hirvonen/Lehtinen (Fin) Ford Focus WRC 2:22,6 min.
3. Henning Solberg/Cato Menkerud (Nor) Peugeot 307 WRC 2:23,3 min.
4. Marcus Grönholm/Rautiainen (Fin) Ford Focus WRC 2:23,4 min.
5. Dani Sordo/Marti (Spa) Citroen Xsara WRC 2:23,5 min.
6. Manfred Stohl/Ilka Minor (Aut) Peugeot 307 WRC 2:24,1 min.
7. Chris Atkinson/Macneall (Aus) Subaru Impreza WRC 2:24,7 min.
8. Jari-Matti Latvala/Anttila  (Fin) Ford Focus WRC 2:25,7 min.