Sunday | 25 Oct 2015

Tidemand wins WRC 2, Al-Attiyah takes title

Pontus Tidemand won WRC 2 at Spain’s Rally RACC Catalunya - Costa Daurada on Sunday but it wasn’t enough to prevent Nasser Al-Attiyah securing the title for a second consecutive season.

The Swede took the lead from Al-Attiyah early on Friday and was never headed as he won the four-day mixed surface event near Barcelona by 10.7sec from Skoda Fabia R5 team-mate Jan Kopecký.

If Tidemand won, Al-Attiyah needed to finish no lower than third in his Fabia R5 to clinch the title at his final points-scoring opportunity, no matter what the Swede did at next month’s final round in Britain.

The Qatari held third but was under threat from a charging Armin Kremer, who closed the gap to just a tenth of a second ahead of the final stage. However, Al-Attiyah could celebrate a third FIA title in three weeks after the test was cancelled following Sébastien Ogier’s crash.

Tidemand was the rank outsider of the six pre-rally championship hopefuls, but was the last remaining driver who could take the title fight to the last round.

“It’s my first WRC 2 win for Skoda and I could not be happier,” said Tidemand. “When this rally started, my aim was simply to finish. I did not expect to be on top of the podium at all. However, our speed through the gravel stages on Friday was the key to our success.”

Al-Attiyah finished almost four minutes behind Kopecký, who struggled with a slipping clutch today. Yuriy Protasov’s Ford Fiesta RRC and Jaroslaw Koltun’s Fiesta RRC completed the top six.

Eric Camilli retired his Fiesta R5 from third after a mechanical problem.

Enrico Brazzoli won the Production Cup within WRC 2 in a Subaru Impreza after leader Joan Carchat retired his Mitsubishi Lancer this morning.

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