Motor Rallying: Andersson stays in contention


Proton’s PG Andersson picked up a time penalty due to an electrical glitch.

Proton’s PG Andersson picked up a time penalty due to an electrical glitch.
PROTON’S PG Andersson drove to a creditable 12th place overall and 11th amongst the contenders in the Intercontinental Rally Challenge (IRC) at the end of Leg One in Rally Scotland on Saturday.

Running as high as third overall in the early stages of the three-day rally, the Satria Neo S2000, at the hands of Andersson, had also come within 1.2 seconds of claiming the fastest time over the 8.36km second special stage.

After special stage five, Andersson was in fourth place overall but an electrical glitch caused him to pick up a time penalty before continuing with the rest of the afternoon.

“The stages were quite nice but unfortunately, we have some issues with the car and that cost us some time,” said the Swedish driver who has almost a minute to make it to the top 10.

Proton teammate Alister McRae, meanwhile, had driven hard to claim a top 10 position, running as high as ninth, but was forced into early retirement when a rock damaged his Satria Neo S2000’s oil sump over the 17.68km Errochty fifth special stage.

Leading the rally was Skoda’s Andreas Mikkelsen with a massive lead of 50.7 seconds ahead of Bryan Bouffier in a Peugeot 207 S2000 while in third place is defending IRC champion Juho Hanninen in the second leading Skoda Fabia S2000.

Rally Scotland consists of 15 special stages run on gravel over a competitive distance of 196.96km in the forest roads of Stirling, Perth & Kinross and North Lanarkshire.



Motor Rally: Proton survive treacherous run in Belgium

Proton’s P.G. Andersson and Giandomenico Basso in the Satria Neo S2000.

PROTON yesterday completed the Geko Ypres Rally in Belgium and claimed an important breakthrough in the development of the Satria Neo S2000 which demonstrated strong pace in the Intercontinental Rally Challenge (IRC).

In a rally so treacherous, and competing in extremely wet, cold and slippery conditions, Proton’s P.G. Andersson finished 19th from a field of only 61 of the 124 cars that started the two-day 18-stage rally.

The rally had also attracted the biggest entry of 31 S2000 cars.

Inflicting serious casualty, the Geko Ypress Rally claimed the likes of many top drivers, including local favourite, Thiery Neuville who did not even reach the finish of the first special stage.

Restarting under Super Rally Format, Neuville again retired on the first special stage of the second and final day.

Proton drivers, Giandomenico Basso and Andersson, had both come within nine seconds of creeping into the top 10 finishers at the rally which was dominated by Skoda and Peugeot, before being struck by misfortune.

Pushing hard to get into the top 10 after finishing the first day in 11th and just nine seconds adrift, Basso’s rally came to an end in SS7 when he hit a low brick wall which was hidden in the tall grass that put the Satria Neo S2000 into a ditch.

But all was not lost for Proton when Andersson began to pick up his pace and shot from 18th in the opening stage (SS7) to 17th and then 16th over the next two special stages (SS8 and SS9).

By SS10, he was 12th and with one stage to go in SS17, the double Junior World Rally Champion brought the Satria Neo S2000 to 11th and within 8.9 seconds of that top 10 finish.

“Despite the misfortune and missing out on a top 10 finish, we come away from what was clearly a very tough and treacherous rally, achieving tremendous progress in terms of the development of the Satria Neo S2000,” said Proton Motorsports head Datuk Abdul Razak Dawood.

The rally, which was run on 287km of competitive asphalt stages, was won by Freddy Loix in a Skoda Fabia S2000.

Bryan Bouffier, driving the Peugeot 207 S2000, finished second ahead of Hans Weijs in a Skoda Fabia S200.

>IRC – Proton Motorsports raih mata IRC rali Sepanyol


Jentera Satria Neo Super 2000 yang dipandu Giandomenico Basso memecut pada laluan lurus ketika perlumbaan Rali Islas Canarias El Corte Ingles, Sepanyol, kelmarin.

KUALA LUMPUR – Kekecewaan Proton Motorsports pada pusingan pertama Cabaran Rali Antara Benua (IRC) di Monte Carlo, Monaco terubat apabila pemandunya, Giandomenico Basso meraih mata cukup bermakna pada Rali Islas Canarias El Corte Ingles, Sepanyol yang berlangsung selama tiga hari dan menutup tirai kelmarin.

Pemandu Itali itu yang memandu jentera Satria Neo Super 2000, mempamerkan pemanduan bersemangat bagi menghabiskan perlumbaan di tempat ke sembilan untuk meraih dua mata dan lebih bermakna, Proton berjaya mengutip 16 mata kategori pengeluar.

Dengan itu, untuk pusingan kedua ini, Proton bukan sekadar dinobatkan sebagai terbaik di kalangan pembuat-pembuat kereta Asia, namun mendahului pencabar yang memiliki jenama lebih terkemuka seperti Suzuki, Honda dan Subaru, malahan pada sama mengaibkan jenama Eropah termasuk Citroen, Renault dan Ford.

Keputusan di Sepanyol itu turut menempatkan Proton pada kedudukan keempat keseluruhan IRC selepas berakhirnya dua pusingan, dua mata di belakang Subaru.

Carta kedudukan di ungguli Skoda dan Peugeot yang masing-masing mengumpul 73 dan 67 mata setakat ini.

Lapan tempat teratas dikuasai sepenuhnya Skoda dan Peugeot, dengan juara bertahan IRC, Juno Hanninen menjuarai pusingan kali ini di hadapan rakan sepasukan Jan Kopecky.