Hella Battery Town Rally of Rotorua / FIA Asia-Pacific Rally Championship - Round 3 of 6
Communique 2 10 July 2004 Leg 2

MITSUBISHI LANCER EVOLUTION DRIVER ARMIN KREMER MAINTAINS ASIA-PACIFIC SERIES LEAD
Kremer claims second in New Zealand
Lancer Evolution drivers 2nd, 3rd and 4th overall
10 Lancer Evolutions in the top 15 positions

Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution Gr. N
Armin Kremer / Fred Berssen
(Leg 2 - 10 July 2004)

Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution driver Armin Kremer, and co-driver Fred Berssen, finished the Rally of Rotorua, the third round of the FIA Asia-Pacific Rally Championship, in second position. The German won the second leg of the event, which ran under ’SUPERally’ regulations, and, mid-way through the series, leads the Championship by just one point over arch rival Karamjit Singh.

The third round of the series took the contenders to New Zealand and while Kremer suffered during the opening leg, he nevertheless managed to power back up the leaderboard during the second day of competition. Having chosen too soft a compound tire for the first two stages of the rally, the German reigning Asia-Pacific champion dropped to ninth position, but by the end of the day had climbed back to second behind ultimate victor, Singh, with a string of top times.

Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution Gr. N
Katsuhiko Taguchi / Mark Stacey
(Leg 2 - 10 July 2004)
A cold and frosty start to today’s second leg saw temperatures between eight and 12 degrees and while Kremer set three fastest stage times, the deficit to Singh was simply too much to overcome.

"I love the rally with these nice but difficult stages", said Kremer at the finish. “Unfortunately we could not go the same speed on the first day; we are not good enough in tight corners and are still missing traction".

Fred Berssen - co-driving in place of Timo Gottschalk who was driving in Bohemia this weekend - added: "If the first day went like the second one, a win would have been possible".

Local driver Mark Tapper finished third in another Lancer Evolution while Kremer’s team-mate and 1999 Asia-Pacific Rally Champion Katsuhiko Taguchi claimed fourth overall, third of the registered contenders. The Japanese Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution driver set one fastest time today and holds third position in the Championship standings.

The fourth round of the FIA Asia-Pacific Rally Championship takes the contenders to Japan (September 3-5) and the event will run alongside the country’s inaugural round of the FIA World Rally Championship.

FINAL OVERALL CLASSIFICATION

  Driver Co-driver Nat. Car Gr/Cl Total Time Diff.
 Karamjit Singh A  Allen Oh MAL  Proton Pert N/4 2:42:56.8   
2   Armin Kremer A  Fred Berssen D  Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution N/4 2:44:47.4  + 1:50.6 
3   Mark Tapper  Jeff Judd NZ  Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution N/4 2:45:31.2  + 2:34.4 
4   Katsuhiko Taguchi A  Mark Stacey J/AUS  Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution N/4 2:45:56.5  + 2:59.7 
 Chris West  Gary Cowan NZ  Subaru Impreza WRX N/4 2:47:30.4  + 4:33.6 
6   Tom Pritchard  Richard Scoular NZ  Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution N/4 2:49:36.4  + 6:39.6 
7   Dean Sumner  Jeff Cress NZ  Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution N/4 2:50:28.0  + 7:31.2 
 Hiroshi Yanagisawa  Tadashi Misaizu J  Subaru Impreza WRX N/4 2:50:42.3  + 7:45.5 
 Nicola Caldarola A  Paolo Cecchini I  Subaru Impreza WRX STI N/4 2:50:45.8  + 7:49.0 
10   Geof Argyle A  Steve Smith NZ  Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution N/4 2:50:58.6  + 8:01.8 
11   Grant Barber  Paul Fallon NZ  Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution N/4 2:52:30.8  + 9:34.0 
12   Christopher Atkinson A  Benjamin Atkinson AUS  Suzuki IGNIS Super 1600 A/6 2:53:11.5  + 10:14.7 
13   Deborah Kibble  Jamie Kibble NZ  Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution N/4 2:54:21.5  + 11:24.7 
14   Brett Martin  Raymond Bennett NZ  Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution N/4 2:55:02.8  + 12:06.0 
15   Daniel Palau  Thierry Song F  Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution N/4 2:57:04.0  + 14:57.2 
.../...
17   Masahiro Nakajima  Naoki Kurosaki J  Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution N/4 3:00:34.2  + 17:37.4 
18   Brian Green A  Fleur Pedersen NZ  Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution N/4 3:02:20.6  + 19:23.8 
19   Dermott Malley A  Patrick Malley NZ  Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution N/4 3:05:24.1  + 22:27.3 
20   Masaki Yamada  Masako Sakane J  Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution N/4 3:07:41.2  + 24:44.4 
Nationalities: AUS=Australia / D=Germany / F=France / I=Italy / J=Japan / MAL=Malaysia / NZ=New Zealand /
Names underlined followed by A indicate drivers eligible for FIA Asia Pacific Rally Championship points