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FIA PRODUCTION CAR WORLD RALLY CHAMPIONSHIP
ROUND 8: RALLY NEW ZEALAND
MITSUBISHI LANCER DRIVER MAKES PODIUM ON RALLY NEW ZEALAND  
19 NOVEMBER 2006 LEG 3 RELEASE
 
PWRC FINAL RESULTS
OVERALL FINAL RESULTS

Fumio Nutahara / Daniel Barritt
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX
 

Mirco Baldacci / Giovanni Agnese
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX
 

Juho Hanninen / Marko Sallinen
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX
 
Multiple Japanese Rally Champion Fumio Nutahara ended his Production World Rally Championship season on a high with second place in the end of season standings, courtesy of a fine fourth position on Rally New Zealand, which ended in Hamilton today. Finland’s Juho Hanninen was top Mitsubishi driver home, clinching the runners-up spot in Group N in his Lancer Evolution.

Nutahara’s hopes and dreams of winning the Group N-based Production series were hit hard when he slipped off the road on the second leg. Through today’s six stages, Nutahara and his British co-driver Daniel Barritt maintained a fantastic pace, with their Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution running without any problems.

"It was so slippery in some places today," said Nutahara. "It would have been easy to go off the road again I have had to remain concentrating very hard! The car and the tires have worked well. The rain makes the stages very slippery, but at the same time, I think that is the condition which is best for us and our tires. I have enjoyed this rally very much. I am very disappointed with what happened yesterday, but these things happen in the sport. Nasser [Al-Attiyah] has driven well this season and he is a good champion. Second place in the championship and three wins in the Production race is good for me."

San Marino’s Mirco Baldacci had moved his Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution into the lead of Group N this morning, but missed out on the chance to score his first ever Production World Rally Championship win following transmission trouble in the Whaanga Coast test. Baldacci was eventually registered as fourth-placed finisher.

"It is very disappointing not to finish this event," said Baldacci. "I had gone so well in the fast stages yesterday and the day before, I really think we could have won here. Okay, this is the way the sport is sometimes."

Finland’s Juho Hanninen ensured there was a Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution right at the front of the Group N field on Rally New Zealand. Not registered for Production points, Hanninen was still among the fastest drivers in the field on legs one and two of this event. He continued that pace through the final day, posting fastest time on four from six stages.

"Today has been quite tricky," said Hanninen. "For my first time in the legendary Whaanga Coast stage, I thought it was very difficult. There was so much mud in the last part, very, very tricky. The car was good, though, we had no trouble with it at all."

At the front of the field, Marcus Gronholm collected his sixth win of the season for the Ford team with team-mate Mikko Hirvonen a comfortable second overall. Peugeot driver Manfred Stohl started and finished the day in third place.


 PWRC FINAL CLASSIFICATION
Pos Driver
Co-Driver
Vehicle Total
Time
Diff
Leader
1 Jari-Matti Latvala
Miikka Anttila
Subaru Impreza WRX Sti 4:18:53.1 **:**.*
2 Richard Mason
Sara Randall
Subaru Impreza WRX 4:22:50.7 +3:57.6
3 Alexander Dorosinskiy
Dmitry Eremeev
Subaru Impreza STI 4:34:39.9 +15:46.8
4 Takuma Kamada
Denis Giraudet
Subaru Impreza WRX 4:35:39.2 +16:46.1
5 Mirco Baldacci
Giovanni Agnese
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX 4:37:45.1 +18:52.0
6 Fumio Nutahara
Daniel Barritt
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX 4:41:37.1 +22:44.0
7 Nasser Al-Attiyah
Chris Patterson
Subaru Impreza 4:47:41.9 +28:48.8
8 Nigel Heath
Steve Lancaster
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VIII 4:54:58.3 +36:05.2
9 Toshi Arai
Tony Sircombe
Subaru Impreza STI 4:55:16.9 +36:23.8


 OVERALL FINAL CLASSIFICATION
Pos Driver
Co-Driver
Vehicle Grp
Pos
Total
Time
Diff
Leader
1
M1
Marcus Gronholm
Timo Rautiainen
Ford Focus RS WRC 06 A
1
4:02:30.7 **:**.*
2
M1
Mikko Hirvonen
Jarmo Lehtinen
Ford Focus RS WRC 06 A
2
4:03:26.7 +56.0
3
M2
Manfred Stohl
Ilka Minor
Peugeot 307 WRC A
3
4:05:10.0 +2:39.3
4
M1
Xavier Pons
Carlos Del Barrio
Citroen Xsara WRC A
4
4:05:26.8 +2:56.1
5
M1
Daniel Sordo
Marc Marti
Citroen Xsara WRC A
5
4:05:51.4 +3:20.7
6
M1
Petter Solberg
Phil Mills
Subaru Impreza WRC 2006 A
6
4:07:27.8 +4:57.1
7
M2
Luis Perez Companc
Jose Maria Volta
Ford Focus RS WRC 06 A
7
4:13:22.3 +10:51.6
8
P
Jari-Matti Latvala
Miikka Anttila
Subaru Impreza WRX Sti N
1
4:18:53.1 +16:22.4
9 Juho Hanninen
Marko Sallinen
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX N
2
4:20:00.9 +17:30.2
10
P
Richard Mason
Sara Randall
Subaru Impreza WRX N
3
4:22:50.7 +20:20.0
11 Valentino Rossi
Carlo Cassini
Subaru Impreza WRC 2005 A
8
4:23:09.5 +20:38.8
12
M2
Henning Solberg
Cato Menkerud
Peugeot 307 WRC A
9
4:23:48.6 +21:17.9
13
M2
Matthew Wilson
Michael Orr
Ford Focus RS WRC 06 A
10
4:24:31.7 +22:01.0
14 Dean Sumner
Paul Fallon
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VIII N
4
4:28:46.4 +26:15.7
15 Stewart Taylor
Warwick Searle
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX N
5
4:31:18.1 +28:47.4
16
P
Alexander Dorosinskiy
Dmitry Eremeev
Subaru Impreza STI N
6
4:34:39.9 +32:09.2
17
P
Takuma Kamada
Denis Giraudet
Subaru Impreza WRX N
7
4:35:39.2 +33:08.5
18
P
Mirco Baldacci
Giovanni Agnese
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX N
8
4:37:45.1 +35:14.4
19 Loris Baldacci
Dario D'Esposito
Subaru Impreza WRX N
9
4:39:44.5 +37:13.8
20 Brent Taylor
Chris Ramsay
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VI N
10
4:40:08.2 +37:37.5
../
21
P
Fumio Nutahara
Daniel Barritt
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX N
11
4:41:37.1 +39:06.4
22 Malcolm Stewart
Mike Fletcher
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VI A
11
4:42:14.3 +39:43.6
25 Kevin Shaw
John Allen
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VII N
13
4:45:50.5 +43:19.8
28 Greg Stevenson
Malcolm Peden
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VII N
16
4:54:57.2 +52:26.5
29
P
Nigel Heath
Steve Lancaster
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VIII N
17
4:54:58.3 +52:27.6
32 Akira Bamba
Jamie Kibble
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VIII N
20
4:59:53.4 +57:22.7
33 Patrick Malley
Raymond Bennett
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VII N
21
5:00:28.8 +57:58.1
34 Michael Kahlfuss
Ronald Bauer
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VI N
22
5:01:38.5 +59:07.8
35 Matt Shinnors
Anthony Wilkey
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VI N
23
5:15:40.2 +1:13:09.5
36 Nakita Stevenson
Warwick Martin
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VII N
24
5:22:15.2 +1:19:44.5
37 Dermott Malley
Linzi Malley
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VIII N
25
5:32:40.8 +1:30:10.1



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