Saturday | 21 May 2016

Koci capitalises on Tempestini's troubles

Martin Koci topped the Junior WRC standings on Saturday night but former leader Simone Tempestini made a spirited recovery from brake problems to keep the fight for honours alive going into the final day.

A leaking brake pipe cost Italian Tempestini almost 90sec and the lead as Koci claimed top spot from Terry Folb. Tempestini was down to third, a 40sec penalty for arriving late at the start of SS11 as he tried to make repairs leaving him a seemingly hopeless 1min 39sec off the lead.

However, he won all four of the remaining stages to eat into Koci’s advantage and the pair will head into tomorrow’s final four stages separated by 30.8sec in Citroën’s DS 3 R3 cars.

“We tried to push from the beginning and it worked out well. In the second loop we tried to be safe because of the rocks and rough places but Simone was pushing hard. It worked well for him but we still have a 30sec lead so it’s good for tomorrow. I think it will be a good battle,” said Koci.

Folb avoided problems to hold third, 26.8sec behind Tempestini. Vincent Dubert was fourth almost 10 minutes off the lead, despite breaking two wheel studs, with Ole Christian Veiby and Romain Martel completing the top six. Veiby failed to complete the day after two punctures led to a broken driveshaft. 

Mohamed Al Mutawaa rolled out, Pole Lukasz Pieniazek retired with a damaged gearbox and Thilo Himmell exited after going off and damaging his radiator.

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