Pontus Tidemand continued to dominate the WRC 2 support category at Rally Guanajuato Mexico on Saturday to extend his lead to almost six minutes.
After completing a clean sweep of special stage victories in the opening leg, the Swede traded wins with returning team-mate Kalle Rovanperä today. Tidemand claimed five fastest times compared to the teenage Finn’s four.
Tidemand, driving a Skoda Fabia R5, eased through the hot and abrasive dirt roads in the mountains near León to stretch his advantage to 5min 42.6sec. The reigning champion focused on finding a cautious pace that did not endanger his huge lead.
“It’s hard to find a really good rhythm but I think I found an okay feeling in the end. If you try to save too much the car is not working. We’ve just been trying to find a good balance,” he explained.
Young Briton Gus Greensmith was second and on course for a career best result in his Ford Fiesta R5. He punctured in the opening test but avoided trouble for the rest of the day and concentrated on gaining experience.
“I took soft tyres to try something new because we’re in the middle of nowhere in terms of position. It didn’t work because the times weren’t very good, but it’s knowledge I can take into next year,” he said.
Pedro Heller was third, a further 6min 36.2sec behind in another Fiesta and all three were inside the top 10 overall.
Marquito Bulacia was fourth, the young Bolivian surviving broken suspension to end 8min 11.8sec behind his fellow south American. Rovanperä, back after retiring yesterday with a broken radiator, was fifth.
Jari Huttunen and Nil Solans both retired for a second consecutive day. Huttunen was sidelined due to leak in his Hyundai i20’s fuel system while Spaniard Solans stopped after hitting a rock and breaking his Fiesta’s front left suspension.
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