RALLY NEW ZEALAND (24-27 JULY)
1998 WORLD RALLY CHAMPIONSHIP ROUND 9
1998 ASIA PACIFIC RALLY CHAMPIONSHIP ROUND 3

 


1998 RALLY NEW ZEALAND
Sunday 26, July
Leg 2 Totals - 611.43 km - 8 SS in 129.20 km
COMMUNIQUE 3

MITSUBISHI SHINES ON RALLY NEW ZEALAND

Mitsubishi Carisma GT driver Richard Burns has set a storming pace to climb to third position on the Rally New Zealand, the ninth round of the 1998 World Rally Championship, while team-mate Tommi Makinen gave strong support, consolidating sixth place in his Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution.

Competitors faced atrocious conditions, as heavy rain flooded even main roads and caused two stages to be cancelled. Fallen trees and landslides were also hazards, yet some stage records were broken ~ proof that technical progress is constant in the World Rally Championship. Mitsubishi's drivers made the most of Michelin's latest tyres to cope with running water and a film of mud on demanding high-speed roads that wind through lush farmland.

Burns, co-driven by Robert Reid, rocketed past New Zealand expert Colin McRae to keep his ultra-reliable Mitsubishi Carisma GT in touch with the leaders in readiness for the decisive stages tomorrow.

"Today was what I wanted. I've been trying very hard, and the car and the tyres have been good, although it's been difficult with the mud on the road. It's not done and dusted, that's for sure," Burns predicted.

World Rally Champion Makinen and co-driver Risto Mannisenmaki have not set their usual rapid pace, as Makinen admits that he is anxious to finish, but they speeded up noticeably towards the end of the leg, their Lancer has run faultlessly and they have every chance of improving on the last and longest day of the rally.

"We spun on one stage and also hit a bank, but I think I am driving better now and I think I can gain some places, but it is important that we score points for the team," Makinen said.
"It's been quite a satisfactory day. Richard has driven particularly well. He's fighting a good battle with Colin McRae and seems to have gained the upper hand. Tommi is picking up the pace after struggling a little and there is no doubt that the first few cars have had the best of the conditions. There's still plenty to play for," stated Team Mitsubishi Ralliart Team Manager Phil Short.

Yoshihiro Kataoka is fighting hard for supremacy in the Asia-Pacific Championship and has climbed to 10th place in his Lancer Evolution, just in front of the similar car of Australia's Ed Ordynski. In the Group N production class, Katsuhiko Taguchi has recorded some excellent times to bring his Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution into a strong third place.

The third leg is the longest and toughest of the event. It includes another seven stages, totalling 182 kilometres, around Raglan and Otorohanga, south of Auckland.






OVERALL CLASSIFICATION AFTER LEG 2

1.D.AURIOL/D.GIRAUDET F/F TOYOTA COROLLA 1.43.23.6
2.C.SAINZ/L.MOYA E/E TOYOTA COROLLA 1.43.54.0
3.R.BURNS/R.REID GB/GB MITSUBISHI CARISMA GT 1.44.08.5
4.C.MCRAE/N.GRIST GB/GB SUBARU IMPREZA 1.44.18.0
5.J.KANKKUNEN/J.REPO FIN/FIN FORD ESCORT 1.44.57.4
6.T.MAKINEN/R.MANNISENMAKI FIN/FIN MITSUBISHI LANCER 1.44.58.7
7.P.LIATTI/F.PONS S/S SUBARU IMPREZA 1.46.55.8
8.T.RADSTROM/G.BARTH S/S TOYOTA COROLLA 1.47.05.3
9.Y.FUJIMOTO/T.SIRCOMBE J/NZ TOYOTA COROLLA 1.52.01.8
10.Y.KATAOKA/S.HAYASHI J/J MITSUBISHI LANCER 1.52.47.4
10.E.ORDYNSKI/M.STACEY AUS/AUS MITSUBISHI LANCER 1.53.08.5
12.G.ARGYLE/R.BENNETT NZ/NZ MITSUBISHI LANCER 1.53.15.2


MICHELIN - MITSUBISHI OIL - ENKEI - NGK - OHLINS - OMP -
PIAA - PRINGLE OF SCOTLAND - SABELT

 

 

PRE EVENT PRESS RELEASE ENTRY LIST MITSUBISHI LANCER/MITSUBISHI CARISMA GT
SPECIAL STAGE RESULT PHOTO LIBRARY FIA CHAMPIONSHIPS CLASSIFICATIONS
COMMUNIQUE 1 - Leg 1 - 1 SS COMMUNIQUE 2 - Leg 1
COMMUNIQUE 3 - Leg 2 COMMUNIQUE 4 - Leg 3
TOP PAGE

 

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Copyright 1998 by Mitsubishi Motors Corporation.