20 June 2004 - 13:26
ERC: Rally Bulgaria 2004 started
Bruno Thiry : I'm counting on my last year's experience
Òhe official shakedown for the 35th edition of the Bulgaria Rally, 3rd round for the FIA European Championship rally, ended this afternoon. Between noon and 5 p.m., the Bastos-Citroën team could have a close look at the C2's handling, definitely influenced by the new homologations it carried.
The suspension is definitely doing a very fine job, confirms the reigning European champ. However, the roads used for the shakedown have absolutely nothing in common with the roads we'll be using during the race itself. Today's tarmac was very rough and bumpy, whereas starting from tomorrow, the roads will be extremely flat and very often with no grip at all.
During recce, Bruno and Nicolas encountered fairly bright weather conditions:After last week's torrential rains, the roads have dried up, but we are in the hills and a blue sky may hide dark rainclouds... Tyre choice will be crucial should it start raining.
Bruno is very confident at the eve of his Bulgarian job. Edition 2004 is almost a copy-paste of last year's race, with the exception of 1 kilometre. I won here last year, and in 2000 at the wheel of the Citroën Xsara kit car we were victorious as well. So I'm counting at bit on the experience I gained here during these two editions. I think I'm getting to grips with the C2 and I hope to drive this rally with the same speed I had during the second day of the Polski, two weeks ago.
Kronos Racing [18/06/04 - 16:08]
ERC: Rally Bulgaria, Leg 1 - Bruno Thiry out with a 'bang'
Bruno Thiry and Nicolas Gilsoul, driving the new Citroën C2 Super 1600 in only its second European outing, didn't make it to the finish of SS 4 (Sestrimo 1, 31,98 km). After SS 2 and 3 on Saturday morning, the European titleholder held a 4th overall position behind leader Luca Pedersoli and a second in the Super 1600 class.
During the service on the tiny Dolna Baynets airfield not far from Borovetz, Bruno was very confident. Very happy with his car's set-up, he was ready to give his all in his fight against Pedersoli, Jean-Joseph and the others.
In the second section of SS4 (Sestrimo 38,98 km) Bruno's engine went out with a big bang, without any warning.
Afterwards, returning back to his service area, Bruno remained philosophical about his retirement : "That's racing, it's part of the sport. Sometimes you win, sometimes you loose." Notwithstanding this retirement, the Kronos team remains very focussed on the coming race, the Westhoek 24 Hours of Ypres.
See you in Ypres.
Kronos Racing [19/06/04 - 18:43]