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Wed February 4, 2009

Hanninen praises Skoda after Monte Skoda Hanninen praises Skoda after Monte Juho Hanninen (pictured) is optimistic of a strong continuation to the season after his Skoda’s Fabia’s impressive debut on the Monte Carlo Rally. In particular, the Finn is eager to sample the IRC’s gravel events: his favoured surface....

Thu January 29, 2009

Outstanding ratings for IRC Monte Carlo IRC Outstanding ratings for IRC Monte Carlo Eurosport Events, the promoter of the Intercontinental Rally Challenge is delighted to announce outstanding viewing figures from the Monte Carlo Rally, the opening round of the 2009 IRC series....

Mon January 26, 2009

Monte Carlo 2009, the future legend! IRC Monte Carlo 2009, the future legend! The Rallye Monte Carlo ended in a gigantic show. Here our report on the final night. Of the other stages we already have done reports on the day. However a quick flash back on the rally action overall. With the rally showdown being set over the Col de Turini, which is right at th...

Sun January 25, 2009

Successful premiere for Skoda Motorsport IRC Successful premiere for Skoda Motorsport The Škoda Motorsport factory team presented two Fabia Super 2000 racing cars at this season' s first IRC event, entering a new stage of their Fabia Super 2000 project after nearly two years of development work. Driven by Finns Juho Hänninen and Mikko Markkula and Czechs Jan K...

Sat January 24, 2009

Wittmann counts Monte a success IRC Wittmann counts Monte a success The starting position prior to the last four special stages had been extremely well for Franz Wittmann/ Bernhard Ettel. They were in excellent ninth overall place and at the same time the best team in a non-S-2000-car....

Peugeot 1-2-3 on thrilling Monte Peugeot Peugeot 1-2-3 on thrilling Monte The 2009 Rallye Monte-Carlo will doubtlessly be remembered for many years to come as one of the winter classic's most thrilling editions, if only because of the cocktail of wintry conditions and dramatic turnarounds that kept spectators on their toes from start to finish. Th...

Ogier wins Monte Carlo IRC Ogier wins Monte Carlo Reigning Junior World Rally Champion Sebastien Ogier has won the 77th Monte Carlo Rally for the BFGoodrich Drivers' Team: the first time that the programme - which chooses a different local driver from the five rounds of the IRC on which it operates - has resulted in a rally w...

Fri January 23, 2009

Leg3, Turini Night coming Games Leg3, Turini Night coming The last day is running and started with a bang. Well, 3 bangs in the top10 to be exact! Now the night action starts. The Turini Night is by all regarded as the key to success on the Rallye Monte Carlo. Though WRC restrictions meant this is the first Turini Night since over 10 ye...

Classic Monte, leg2 Skodas day - nearly! IRC Classic Monte, leg2 Skodas day - nearly! Leg2 was in every sense what we expected of a real Rallye Monte Carlo. And the best bit is still to come, the Turini Night. Skoda utterly dominated the first loop of leg2, while Peugeot’s drivers with favourite status in Monte Carlo faltered. But after near 2 days of Skoda lead, ...

NEWS JUST IN

IRC MC end - Sébastien wins Monte! @ 11:18 PM - It's a historic Peugeot 1-2-3 on this historic Monte! Final end positions (SS14, subject to last time control and scrutineering): 1st= Ogier/Ingrassia, Peugeot, 4h40m45s7; 2nd= Loix/Smets, Peugeot, +1m43s6; 3rd= Sarrazin/Renucci, Peugeot, +2m21s6; 4th= Kopecky/Stary, Skoda, +3m17s3; 5th= Basso/Dotta, Fiat Abarth, +4m28s; 6th= Alen/Alanne, Fiat Abarth, +10m49s7; 7th= Romeyer/Fournel, Mitsubishi, +20m30s3; 8th= Burri/Gordon, Fiat Abarth, +20m23s; 9th= Betti/Mattioda, Renault, +24m04s8; 10th= Artru/Virieu, Mitsubishi, +25m50s7

IRC MC SS13 - Top3 closer together @ 11:10 PM - Peugeot comfortable in top3. Sarrazin stage win opens gap to Kopecky. One stage left. Positions after SS13: 1st= Ogier/Ingrassia, Peugeot, 4h23m38s6; 2nd= Loix/Smets, Peugeot, +1m51s6; 3rd= Sarrazin/Renucci, Peugeot, +2m46s1; 4th= Kopecky/Stary, Skoda, +3m18s; 5th= Basso/Dotta, Fiat Abarth, +4m41s5; 6th= Alen/Alanne, Fiat Abarth, +10m41s9; 7th= Romeyer/Fournel, Mitsubishi, +20m00s3; 8th= Burri/Gordon, Fiat Abarth, +20m29s7; 9th= Betti/Mattioda, Renault, +22m52s4; 10th= Artru/Virieu, Mitsubishi, +24m37s1

IRC MC SS12 - Gardemeister out! @ 08:22 PM - Reason for Gardemeister unknown, but he did not start stage and hands a podium clean sweep to Peugeot. Abarth of Maurin out too. However Basso wins this tricky stage by over half a minute! Positions after SS12: 1st= Ogier/Ingrassia, Peugeot, 3h52m47s2; 2nd= Loix/Smets, Peugeot, +1m57s4; 3rd= Sarrazin/Renucci, Peugeot, +3m45s8; 4th= Kopecky/Stary, Skoda, +3m47s8; 5th= Basso/Dotta, Fiat Abarth, +5m01s3; 6th= Alen/Alanne, Fiat Abarth, +10m59s9; 7th= Romeyer/Fournel, Mitsubishi, +19m01s1; 8th= Burri/Gordon, Fiat Abarth, +19m35s6; 9th= Betti/Mattioda, Renault, +20m34s1; 10th= Artru/Virieu, Mitsubishi, +21m24s6

IRC MC SS11 - Turini the 1st! @ 07:46 PM - Top3 move closer together, as Loix wins stage and Gardemeister makes up 17sec on Ogier. Alen 3rd fastest behind Gardemeister, however Sarrazin wrong tyre choice, Basso spin, Burri off, Kopecky powersteering problems. The battle France (Peugeot) vs Italy (Abarth) is in full swing! Positions after SS11: 1st= Ogier/Ingrassia, Peugeot, 3h34m16s5; 2nd= Gardemeister/Tuominen, Fiat Abarth, +1m33s4; 3rd= Loix/Smets, Peugeot, +2m21s4; 4th= Sarrazin/Renucci, Peugeot, +4m06s5; 5th= Kopecky/Stary, Skoda, +4m32s3; 6th= Basso/Dotta, Fiat Abarth, +6m16s; 7th= Alen/Alanne, Fiat Abarth, +10m; 8th= Maurin/Thimonier, Fiat Abarth, +14m01s8; 9th= Romeyer/Fournel, Mitsubishi, +18m46s6; 10th= Burri/Gordon, Fiat Abarth, +19m21s

IRC MC SS10 - Hänninen, Meeke out! @ 09:24 AM - What an amazing twist already before Turini Night! Stage is extremely twisty and snow covered. Hänninen and Meeke both crashed out, Loix lost over 2min. Gardemeister, 5th before this stage, is now Ogier's closest thread! Positions after leg3 (SS10): 1st= Ogier/Ingrassia, Peugeot, 3h03m10s2; 2nd= Gardemeister/Tuominen, Fiat Abarth, +1m50s5; 3rd= Loix/Smets, Peugeot, +2m49s6; 4th= Sarrazin/Renucci, Peugeot, +3m59s6; 5th= Kopecky/Stary, Skoda, +4m34s5; 6th= Basso/Dotta, Fiat Abarth, +6m14s7; 7th= Alen/Alanne, Fiat Abarth, +10m11s5; 8th= Maurin/Thimonier, Fiat Abarth, +13m13s1; 9th= Wittmann/Ettel, Mitsubishi, +13m28s7; 10th= Burri/Gordon, Fiat Abarth, +13m33s8

Thu January 22, 2009

Two Peugeots lead Monte Carlo Peugeot Two Peugeots lead Monte Carlo Following Wednesday's action-packed leg, the second day of the 2009 Rallye Monte Carlo has provided further drama and surprises. Although several Peugeot 207 Super 2000 runners had a difficult start to the morning, Sébastien Ogier and Freddy Loix succeeded in inheriting first ...

Ogier takes lead at the last minute IRC Ogier takes lead at the last minute Although Juho Hanninen and the Skoda team maintained their comfortable pace at the head of the field throughout most of the second day, it is the reigning Junior World Rally Champion Sebastien Ogier who returns to parc ferme in Valence in the lead of the 77th Monte Carlo Rally....

Classic Monte teaser before longest leg IRC Classic Monte teaser before longest leg First review of leg1. Looking through leg2, this leg2 may be he longest leg, but Friday night the leg above Monaco is going to have the most classic Monte sceneries with cliff hangers and tunnels. Meanwhile leg1 turned out a real teaser of the action to come. This was mixed condi...

NEWS JUST IN

IRC MC leg2 - Peugeot takes lead! @ 05:06 PM - Surprise lead for Ogier without winning any stages, after Hänninen has a mild off and collects a puncture on last stage! But top4 are all in for possible victory! Positions after leg2 (SS9): 1st= Ogier/Ingrassia, Peugeot, 2h35m09s9; 2nd= Loix/Smets, Peugeot, +32s4; 3rd= Hänninen/Markkula, Skoda, +54s8; 4th= Meeke/Nagle, Peugeot, +59s2; 5th= Gardemeister/Tuominen, Fiat Abarth, +1m40s7; 6th= Sarrazin/Renucci, Peugeot, +3m42s6; 7th= Kopecky/Stary, Skoda, +4m10s6; 8th= Basso/Dotta, Fiat Abarth, +4m17s8; 9th= Alen/Alanne, Fiat Abarth, +8m12s8; 10th= Wittmann/Ettel, Mitsubishi, +10m01s8

IRC MC SS8 - stage 1-2 for Skoda @ 03:52 PM - Hänninen wins stage ahead of Kopecky, but for the next stage the advantage should be with Peugeot drivers on slick tyres. Basso loses 2 places with mediocre times. Positions after SS8: 1st= Hänninen/Markkula, Skoda, 2h18m45s5; 2nd= Ogier/Ingrassia, Peugeot, +1m32s2; 3rd= Loix/Smets, Peugeot, +1m39s5; 4th= Meeke/Nagle, Peugeot, +2m23s8; 5th= Gardemeister/Tuominen, Fiat Abarth, +2m46s9; 6th= Sarrazin/Renucci, Peugeot, +5m24s6; 7th= Kopecky/Stary, Skoda, +5m31s8; 8th= Basso/Dotta, Fiat Abarth, +5m34s3; 9th= Alen/Alanne, Fiat Abarth, +7m17s; 10th= Wittmann/Ettel, Mitsubishi, +8m37s4

IRC MC SS7 - Vouilloz crash @ 02:57 PM - Vouilloz crashed out, but team mate Sarrazin wins stage. Positions after SS7: 1st= Hänninen/Markkula, Skoda, 2h04m14s3; 2nd= Ogier/Ingrassia, Peugeot, +1m20s3; 3rd= Loix/Smets, Peugeot, +1m34s3; 4th= Meeke/Nagle, Peugeot, +2m08s5; 5th= Gardemeister/Tuominen, Fiat Abarth, +2m39s5; 6th= Basso/Dotta, Fiat Abarth, +5m05s7; 7th= Sarrazin/Renucci, Peugeot, +5m07s2; 8th= Kopecky/Stary, Skoda, +5m29s5; 9th= Alen/Alanne, Fiat Abarth, +6m36s5; 10th= Wittmann/Ettel, Mitsubishi, +7m38s7

IRC MC SS6 - less snow in this stage @ 11:52 AM - But same tyres. Difference seen immediately. Skoda wins another stage, but it's Kopecky. Hänninen loses half a min, Meeke over a min. Positions after SS6: 1st= Hänninen/Markkula, Skoda, 1h47m39s5; 2nd= Ogier/Ingrassia, Peugeot, +1m24s3; 3rd= Loix/Smets, Peugeot, +1m36s9; 4th= Meeke/Nagle, Peugeot, +2m07s2; 5th= Gardemeister/Tuominen, Fiat Abarth, +2m40s2; 6th= Vouilloz/Klinger, Peugeot, +2m53s5; 7th= Basso/Dotta, Fiat Abarth, +4m08s7; 8th= Sarrazin/Renucci, Peugeot, +5m22s4; 9th= Kopecky/Stary, Skoda, +5m25s5; 10th= Alen/Alanne, Fiat Abarth, +6m17s1

IRC MC SS5 - Next stage win for Hänninen @ 10:24 AM - Full snow St. Bonnet stage. Hänninen looks convincing. Many small gaps. Alen pushes Wittmann outside top10 with 2nd fastest time. Positions after SS5: 1st= Hänninen/Markkula, Skoda, 1h31m55s6; 2nd= Meeke/Nagle, Peugeot, +1m27s2; 3rd= Ogier/Ingrassia, Peugeot, +1m27s8; 4th= Loix/Smets, Peugeot, +1m43s3; 5th= Gardemeister/Tuominen, Fiat Abarth, +2m50s2; 6th= Vouilloz/Klinger, Peugeot, +2m54s2; 7th= Basso/Dotta, Fiat Abarth, +3m55s7; 8th= Sarrazin/Renucci, Peugeot, +5m31s3; 9th= Kopecky/Stary, Skoda, +5m58s4; 10th= Alen/Alanne, Fiat Abarth, +5m59s3

IRC MC SS4 - Peugeot falters behind Skoda @ 09:49 AM - Strong lead for Skoda now! Not only wins Hänninen this stage, Vouilloz drops a minute and Sarrazin goes off and drops even 5min! Meeke from 6th to 2nd! Positions after SS4: 1st= Hänninen/Markkula, Skoda, 1h14m54s3; 2nd= Meeke/Nagle, Peugeot, +1m09s8; 3rd= Ogier/Ingrassia, Peugeot, +1m11s3; 4th= Loix/Smets, Peugeot, +1m23s6; 5th= Gardemeister/Tuominen, Fiat Abarth, +1m48s7; 6th= Vouilloz/Klinger, Peugeot, +1m52s4; 7th= Basso/Dotta, Fiat Abarth, +2m35s; 8th= Wittmann/Ettel, Mitsubishi, +4m54s3; 9th= Sarrazin/Renucci, Peugeot, +5m02s7; 10th= Kopecky/Stary, Skoda, +5m06s

IRC SS5 live TV & Online @ 09:27 AM - SS5 of Rallye Monte Carlo is live on Eurosport2 at 10:30 CET (9:30GMT) and live online here

Wed January 21, 2009

Sarrazin heads Peugeot's challenge Peugeot Sarrazin heads Peugeot's challenge The first leg of the 2009 Rallye Monte-Carlo lived up every bit to its promise thanks to a menu of three stages which featured a staggering variety of conditions, ranging from fresh snow, ice and rain to dry asphalt. Choosing the ideal tyres for the different combinations proved ...

Hanninen leads Monte on Fabia's debut IRC Hanninen leads Monte on Fabia's debut Flying Finn Juho Hanninen has given the brand new Skoda Fabia S2000 the lead of the Monte Carlo Rally on the Czech machine's debut. The 26-year-old, who finished runner-up in last year's Production Car World Rally Championship, confirmed the excellent reliability of the Fab...

Meeke: Monte biggest event of my career IRC Meeke: Monte biggest event of my career Britain’s Kris Meeke says this week’s Rallye Monte-Carlo is the most important event of his career....

Monte Carlo: Pre-event press conference IRC Monte Carlo: Pre-event press conference The pre-event press conference was held at Monaco’s Sporting Club with representatives of the Automobile Club de Monaco and the IRC, along with some star drivers....

Monte Carlo TV Times IRC Monte Carlo TV Times Rallye Monte Carlo will mark Eurosport's most ambitious tv schedule to date, featuring no less than seven live televised stages throughout the three day event. First trialled on the Rally du Valais last year, the series promoter use a combination of onboard, helicopter and sta...

NEWS JUST IN

IRC MC leg1 - Meeke wins stage @ 04:05 PM - Tricky conditions, punctures for Vouilloz, Ogier and Gardemeister, complete wrong tyre choice for Alen. Hänninen/Skoda lead without winning a stage. Positions after leg1 (SS3): 1st= Hänninen/Markkula, Skoda, 56m32s8; 2nd= Sarrazin/Renucci, Peugeot, +11s9; 3rd= Vouilloz/Klinger, Peugeot, +33s9; 4th= Ogier/Ingrassia, Peugeot, +49s3; 5th= Loix/Smets, Peugeot, +54s6; 6th= Meeke/Nagle, Peugeot, +1m01s3; 7th= Basso/Dotta, Fiat Abarth, +1m29s8; 8th= Gardemeister/Tuominen, Fiat Abarth, +1m35s5; 9th= Wittmann/Ettel, Mitsubishi, +3m31s2; 10th= Kopecky/Stary, Skoda, +4m30s

IRC MC SS2 - Skoda leads tyre roulette @ 01:03 PM - What a gamble, after a snowy SS1 this stage now was completely dry but same tyres had to be used. Indeed rally leader Vouilloz is a minute off pace and loses lead, while drivers with slow SS1 times excel now. On different tactics Vouilloz and Sarrazin win one stage each, but the rally lead goes to Hänninen! Positions after SS2: 1st= Hänninen/Markkula, Skoda, 37m31s2; 2nd= Sarrazin/Renucci, Peugeot, +16s2; 3rd= Vouilloz/Klinger, Peugeot, +18s8; 4th= Ogier/Ingrassia, Peugeot, +25s; 5th= Gardemeister/Tuominen, Fiat Abarth, +28s7; 6th= Basso/Dotta, Fiat Abarth, +53s2; 7th= Loix/Smets, Peugeot, +54s7; 8th= Meeke/Nagle, Peugeot, +1m06s3; 9th= Wittmann/Ettel, Mitsubishi, +2m06s7; 10th= Alen/Alanne, Fiat Abarth, +2m23s5

IRC MC SS1 - Vouilloz & Hänninen @ 08:50 AM - Exciting start in mixed conditions and surprising pace by Hänninen in the Skoda. However Kopecky mechanical problems. Basso wrong tyre choice, Auriol puncture, Rossetti crashed out. Positions after SS1: 1st= Vouilloz/Klinger, Peugeot, 22m22s9; 2nd= Hänninen/Markkula, Skoda, +2s3; 3rd= Gardemeister/Tuominen, Fiat Abarth, +16s3; 4th= Alen/Alanne, Fiat Abarth, +17s9; 5th= Ogier/Ingrassia, Peugeot, +24s6; 6th= Loix/Smets, Peugeot, +50s9; 7th= Meeke/Nagle, Peugeot, +55s8; 8th= Sarrazin/Renucci, Peugeot, +56s3; 9th= Wittmann/Ettel, Mitsubishi, +1m04s; 10th= Basso/Dotta, Fiat Abarth, +1m20s

Tue January 20, 2009

Wittmann confident after good recce IRC Wittmann confident after good recce Franz Wittmann has completed the unusually long recce for the 77th edition of the Rallye Automobile Monte Carlo without any problems. The Interwetten Racing Team Franz Wittmann/Bernhard Ettel has already been in France for over a week where it was permitted to inspect each of the...

IRC welcome Skoda as 6th manufacturer Skoda IRC welcome Skoda as 6th manufacturer Czech manufacturer Skoda has become the latest manufacturer to register for the 2009 Intercontinental Rally Challenge. The team will enter two new Fabia S2000 cars starting from the Monte Carlo Rally this week, for Finland’s Juho Hanninen and rising Czech star Jan Kopecky....

Monte Carlo: BFGoodrich preview IRC Monte Carlo: BFGoodrich preview The 2009 Intercontinental Rally Challenge kicks off with the world's most famous rally, the Rallye Automobile Monte Carlo. The 77th edition of this winter classic promises to be a fiercely fought affair, with a route that stretches all the way from the Principality of Monaco t...

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