Veiby, Koci return to Junior WRC
Junior series attracts 11 entries for Portugal
Ole Christian Veiby headed the standings after last night’s short opening stage, but Italian Tempestini moved ahead on Friday morning’s opening test and was never headed. He led Martin Koci by 17.1sec, with Terry Folb a further 21.2sec behind.
“It was a nice day at the end but it wasn’t easy,” said Tempestini. “We picked up a power steering problem this morning and a broken damper in the afternoon, but my rhythm and feeling in the car was good and it feels great to be leading. My target is to remain concentrated and keep away from trouble.”
A puncture blunted Veiby’s challenge but the Norwegian recovered strongly to win four stages and climb back to fourth, 1min 24.0sec off the lead.
Vincent Dubert and Mohamed Al Mutawaa completed the top six, despite Dubert receiving a 60sec penalty for checking into a control early and suffering two punctures.
Poland’s Lukasz Pieniazek rolled into retirement this morning and will not restart tomorrow while Andrea Crugnola lost many minutes with broken power steering. Another casualty was Frédéric Hauswald with broken suspension.
All drivers are at the wheel of Citroën DS 3 R3 cars and Tempestini, Koci and Folb also fill the top three places in WRC 3, for which all Junior drivers are also registered.