Casino instead of Col de Turini, slicks instead of spikes, Porsche 911 GT3 Cup instead of Polo R WRC: when Volkswagen rally driver Sébastien Ogier next entertains the people of Monaco, it will not, for a change, be at the “Monte”, but as part of the support programme for the Formula One Monaco Grand Prix. The Frenchman, who leads the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC), will line up in the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup as a guest starter for the “Team Allyouneed by Project 1”. Three weeks after the Rally Argentina, the 3.340-km street circuit will host the next duel with record-breaking world rally champion Sébastien Loeb. It is the first time the two rally aces will have gone head to head on a tarmacked circuit.
Sébastien Ogier: “I am really looking forward to the Supercup race in Monaco. It will be a very special experience for me to experience Monaco from a non-rallying perspective for once. I sat in the Porsche for the first time last week at a test session in Hockenheim. Last year’s winner Sean Edwards gave me a few tips and I was coping really well by the end. I will obviously be keeping half an eye on Sébastien Loeb. The desire to be better is always there – but Séb has much more experience on racetracks. With that in mind, I will be trying to enjoy the weekend and, as always, do my very best.”
Jost Capito, Volkswagen Motorsport Director: “I was involved in establishing the Supercup with Porsche back in 1993, so I’m especially delighted to see Sébastien Ogier competing here in Monaco. I can’t wait to see how he does on the track in the Porsche. He demonstrated emphatically that he can adapt very quickly to any racing car when he won the Race of Champions two years ago. As such, I am very optimistic. For the fans, seeing two of the best rally drivers in the world out on the racetrack will definitely be one of the highlights away from the Formula One race itself.”
Since 1993, the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup has been the only Gran Turismo racing series to be held exclusively on Formula One race weekends. The flagship of the 20 Porsche one-make cups around the world has developed very nicely in this attractive environment. The car of choice for the first time this season is the new Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, which generates about 460 hp (338 kW) courtesy of its 3.8-litre six-cylinder Boxer engine. Sébastien Ogier will drive a Pop Art Porsche with a special livery, courtesy of watch brand TAG Heuer.
Press: Volkswagen Motorsport
Qatar M-Sport’s Nasser Al-Attiyah and co-driver Giovanni Bernacchini continued their dominant campaign in the FIA Middle East Rally Championship (MERC) last weekend as they piloted their Ford Fiesta RRC to a convincing victory at the 2013 Jordan Rally. Nestled in the confines of the region’s world-famous Dead Sea resort, this year’s Jordan Rally was billed as one of the most challenging to date, but that was not to faze the eight-time MERC champion. Despite running first on the road, the Qatari’s Fiesta RRC posted the fastest time on 11 of the event’s 16 stages. In fact M-Sport’s regional rally car secured all 16 stage victories. Lebanese driver Roger Feghali and co-driver Joseph Matar claimed the fastest time on the remaining five speed tests to take second place overall – securing a one-two finish for M-Sport’s Fiestas. Leading the event from start to finish, Al-Attiyah’s victory marked his seventh in Jordan and 48th in the regional series. Last weekend’s victory – secured by a margin of almost two minutes – was also the Qatari’s third successive win in the Middle Eastern series. Indeed Al-Attiyah has taken maximum points from all three rounds so far this season and is well on his way to securing a record-breaking ninth MERC title.
Nasser Al-Attiyah said: “I am really very happy to win this event. This was never going to be an easy rally and, as predicted, it was the toughest event in the championship. But the team did a fantastic job and we were able to lead from the first stage until the last – a great result for Qatar and for M-Sport. “Now I have three wins from three rallies and 75 points. The target at the start of the year was to take the championship, but now I would like to win every rally this season – the grand slam!”
Roger Feghali said: “Of course it would have been better to win the rally after such a fantastic performance, but it was great to have the speed to compete with Nasser [Al-Attiyah] and Khalid [Al-Qassimi] who both have so much experience. “It was a really difficult event for us. Having been away from competition for the past six months, I found it hard to be on the pace straight away. On Day 2 we were able to settle into our usual pace and were setting the fastest time on lots of stages. Thanks to that, we climbed to second place and held it to the end of the rally – I was very happy with that performance.”
M-Sport Managing Director, Malcolm Wilson OBE, said: “Once again the [Ford] Fiesta RRC has proven to be the most competitive car in the [FIA] Middle East Rally Championship. Taking all 16 stage victories is a great achievement for M-Sport and, once again, Nasser [Al-Attiyah] and Giovanni [Bernacchini] have shown that they are the ones to beat. “We also saw some fantastic performances from the other Fiesta drivers with 100 per cent reliability from all six competitors. To have five M-Sport cars in the top-seven is great to see and Roger [Feghali] in particular did a brilliant job to secure a one-two finish for the Fiesta.”
Press: M-SportComments (
The new logo of CROATIA RALLY 2013 has been approved; the tenth round of the 2013 European Rally Championship will take place from September 26th to 28th in Croatia with its headquarter based in Poreč, one of the most beautiful place on the Adriatic coast. The city has tourist infrastructures that run along the 37km of coastline and offer more than 95,000 beds.
The new logo of Croatia Rally, with graphics created by UNITED BUSINESS, shows the traditional and characteristic red and white checks with blue graphic inserts, the same which can be found on the Croatian national flag. Logo is approved by the Board of CCKF (Croatian Car and Karting Federation) and its President, Matko Bolanca.
It has been agreed a cooperation between CCKF and the Italian sports management company, UNITED BUSINESS, which will cooperate with the CCKF to promote the Croatia Rally 2013, the agreement was signed by Matko Bolanca, CCKF’s President and Pier Liberali, General Manager of UNITED BUSINESS.
Zrinko Gregurek, Secretary General of CCKF said: “For the 40th anniversary of Croatia Rally, which has been organized many years and previously known as INA DELTA RALLY by AC DELTA from Zagreb, EUROSPORT EVENTS the promoter of the European Rally Championship, will ensure a worldwide media coverage. United Business is planning a number of initiatives both at sporting level and of side events, to make this Rally one of the most attractive in Europe.”