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: , - 04 February 2004 - 15:16

The first round of Finland's Rally Championship got underway this weekend with the Arctic Rally. A prestigious event that attracted many drivers who will compete in the Swedish Rally next weekend.

The list of famous names included: Sebastian Lindholm (Peugeot 206 WRC), Janne Tuohino (Ford Focus), Jouni Ampuja (Ford Focus), Kaj Kuistila (Ford Focus), Ionnis Papadimitriou (Ford Focus), Juuso Pykalisto (Toyota Corolla), Jarri Latvala (Toyota Corolla) and former F1 World Champion Mika Hakkinen (Toyota Corolla).

A battle between Janne Tuohino and Juuso Pykalisto took place during the first leg of the event. Tuohino stayed in the lead even if Pykalisto came within ten seconds of the leader.

Juuso started the second leg with another attack, bringing the gap down to four seconds on Tuohino. Lindholm was the fastest driver in SS 8 but had to retire on the next stage because of mechanical problems. Janne Tuohino also retired in that stage, also because of mechanical problems.

With the retirement of Tuohino, Juuso Pykalisto took over the lead of the race, more than a minute in front of Ampuja and three minutes ahead of Mikkonen. Latvala takes fourth place while Mika Hakkinen finishes in seventh position in his second participation in this event.

CAPSIS International [02/02/04 - 22:01]

Arctic Rally : Final results

1 PYKALISTO-OVASKAINEN Toyota Corolla WRC 2h14'43"4
2 AMPUJA-LIUKKONEN Ford Focus WRC at 01'11"8
3 MIKKONEN-ERVASTO Ford Focus WRC at 04'19"6
4 LATVALA-REPO Toyota Corolla WRC at 07'27"7
5 PYLVANAINEN-TYLLINEN Ford Focus WRC at 07'28"7
6 MIETTINEN-MARKKULA Mitsubishi Lancer at 09'45"5
7 HAKKINEN-PIETILAINEN Toyota Corolla WRC at 15'10"4
8 JUNNILA-TUOMINEN Mitsubishi Lancer at 18'01"8
9 NIKUPETERI-TIKKANEN Mitsubishi Lancer at 21'25"8
10 SAARINEN-MAKI Audi Coupe S2 at 32'42"4
11 SAVELA-TUORI Mitsubishi Lancer at 33'38"9

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