ÑÂÅÒÎÂÍÈ : Rallye de Wallonie - The first victory for Perneel - 05 May 2004 - 09:44
A lot of action at the Rallye de Wallonie
The Hankook Ford Rally Tour set camp in Jambes, for the "Rallye de Wallonie", its second confrontation of the year. At the end of the race, Ferdi Perneel managed to gain maximum profit of his week-end.
Everybody was impatient for the return of Sébastien Jardon, but it turned out to be a deception. From the second stage on, the pilot from Liège was confronted with suspension problems and lost precious time, too much to fight for victory, also too much to keep up his spirits and motivation. Could this be the reason for his crash later on, which eventually put an end on the performance of the Focus of the reigning champion?
We also expected Robby Vanhees in front, but in this case too, he could not manage to finish, at least partially. He had to retire on Saturday (fuel pump problems) and so lost every chance to win this rally. But he was eagered to take revenge on the second day (the new regulations allow a restart on the second day for teams who have to abandon on the first day) and that is exactly what he did. He won the second leg in front of Ferdi Perneel and Kristof Verloo.
Those two were the drivers who occupied the first two ranks one day earlier. As a logical consequence, they were also the ones who won this Rallye de Wallonie on the overall two-day ranking. They are now on the championship podium, separated by Vanhees, keeping his second place thanks to his victory on Sunday.
What about the other participants of this extremely tough rally for the mechanics ? Phil Nijs had to retire on the first day with a beginning fire, Hein Derynck hit engine troubles and Chris Vanlaer, third on Saturday behind Perneel and Verloo, was forced to retire on Sunday for reason of a recalcitrant gearbox cable.
Ford Rallye Sport, 05/05/2004
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