PRE EVENT PRESS RELEASE ENTRY LIST MITSUBISHI LANCER/MITSUBISHI CARISMA GT
SPECIAL STAGE RESULT PHOTO LIBRARY DAILY COMMUNIQUE

1998 WORLD RALLY CHAMPIONSHIP ROUND 4
TAP RALLYE DE PORTUGAL (22 - 25 MARCH)

1998 TAP RALLYE DE PORTUGAL
Wednesday 25, March
Leg 3 - 389kms- 8SS - 100,58kms
COMMUNIQUE N 4


MITSUBISHI KEEPS WORLD RALLY CHAMPIONSHIP LEAD AND
WINS GROUP N ON RALLY OF PORTUGAL



Team Mitsubishi Ralliart has retained its lead in the 1998 World Rally Championship for Manufacturers thanks to an excellent performance on the fourth round of the series, the Rally of Portugal, in which British driver Richard Burns came fourth in his Mitsubishi Carisma.

Tension reached fever pitch on the last day of the rally, in the rugged hills north-east of Portugal’s second city, Oporto, as the event headed for one of the closest finishes in the 25-year history of the World Rally Championship. Ecstatic fans lined practically every kilometre of the route, standing five-deep at the roadside in towns. School children cheered wildly and old people leaned over balconies to catch sight of Portugal’s biggest sporting event. Hot, dusty conditions made a perfect setting for one of the most hotly fought rallies of all time. The rally will be remembered as a classic, for Colin McRae with his Subaru beat Toyota’s Carlos Sainz by just 2.1 seconds and the top four were covered by less than a minute at the finish. The battle for fifth was also exceptionally close, Ford’s Ari Vatanen narrowly pipping Subaru’s Piero Liatti .

Burns, co-driven by Robert Reid, started the last day in fourth place in his Carisma GT and swapped times with the leaders on the opening stages around Fafe. Unfortunately, he made an unsuccessful gamble on tyre choice for the next three stages and, while his rivals made good use of Michelin’s proven ZA rubber, Burns lost just too much ground to snatch third place on the finish line. He nevertheless maintained his 100% finishing record this year, once again emphasising the reliability of the Mitsubishi Carisma.

“We’ve came out in the same place in the championship as we were at the start – third – and Mitsubishi still leads the manufacturers’ championship. We’ve scored useful points and I’ve got to the end of another event without biffing the car! I’m a bit disappointed, because I lost too much time on the long stage yesterday and again today. Both times we lost something like 10 seconds, but it wasn’t a bad result,” Burns said.

“In the end, it was a satisfactory outcome. We’re still leading the manufacturers’ championship on a tiebreak
and Richard is third in the championship,” concluded Phil Short. “He has had the pressure of shouldering all the team’s hopes since yesterday, on a rally he doesn’t know particularly well. We made a couple of errors on tyre choice today and that can make all the difference. 10ths of a second matter now.”

As usual, Mitsubishi swept the board in Group N, the class for barely modified production cars. Mitsubishi Lancer Evolutions and Carisma GTs took the top four places, led home by vastly experienced Uruguayan Gustavo Trelles, co-driven Martin Christie, the Group N title winner for Mitsubishi for the past two years. He was followed by promising Austrian Manfred Stohl, local hero Miguel Campos and one of Spain’s rising stars, Luis Climent. Once again, it was a telling demonstration of the quality of Mitsubishi engineering.

“It’s been a fantastic rally for us. It is so rough and tough for a nearly standard car like this, with so many rocks and holes on the stages, but the Mitsubishi has been very good all through and I am very pleased to win in this car,” stated Trelles.

Team Mitsubishi Ralliart will be in action again next month on the Catalunya Rally, Spain’s round of the World Rally Championship. The event is awaited with particular eagerness, as it is the first appearance for Mitsubishi’s latest Lancer Evolution and Carisma GT.

 

GENERAL OVERALL CLASSIFICATION

1.C.MCRAE/N.GRIST GB/GB SUBARU IMPREZA 4.20.58.1 Gr-A
2.C.SAINZ/L.MOYA E/E TOYOTA COROLLA 4.21.00.2 Gr-A
3.F.LOIX/S.SMEETS B/B TOYOTA COROLLA 4.21.43.9 Gr-A
4.R.BURNS/R.REID GB/GB MITSUBISHI CARISMA GT 4.21.51.2 Gr-A
5.A.VATANEN/F.GALLAGHER SF/GB FORD ESCORT 4.24.18.3 Gr-A
6.P.LIATTI/F.PONS I/I SUBARU IMPREZA 4.24.22.3 Gr-A
7.J.KANKKUNEN/J.REPO FIN/FIN FORD ESCORT 4.24.350 Gr-A
8.G.DE MEVIUS/JM.FORTIN B/B SUBARU IMPREZA 4.27.57.1 Gr-A
9.R.MADEIRA/N.DA SILVA P/P TOYOTA CELICA 4.31.22.2 Gr-A
10.K.HOLOWCZYC/M.WISLAWSKI PL/PL SUBARU IMPREZA 4.32.56.2 Gr-A
...        
16.G.TRELLES/M.CHRISTIE ROU/RA MITSUBISHI LANCER 4.47.41.5 1st Gr-N
18.M.STOHL/P.MULLER A/A MITSUBISHI LANCER 4.52.11.7 2nd Gr-N
21.M.CAMPOS/C.MAGALHAES P/P MITSUBISHI CARISMA GT 4.53.04.3 3rd Gr-N
22.L.CLIMENT/A.ROMANI E/E MITSUBISHI LANCER 4.54.59.8 4th Gr-N

 

1998 TAP RALLYE DE PORTUGAL

STATISTICS

Dates : 22-25 March 1998

Length : 1701.81 kms

Total SS
: 380.18 kms on 28 SS

Entries
: 120 (79 Group A + 41 Group N)

Makes
: Mitsubishi 16, Seat 15, Subaru 15, Ford 11, Toyota 11, Renault 10, Peugeot 10, Nissan 7, Citroen 5, Volkswagen 4, Fiat 4, Skoda 3, Lancia 3, Hyundai 2, Honda 1, Opel 1, Mercedes 1, Mazda 1.

Nations (first drivers)
: 64 P, 9 GB, 8 E, 7 F, 5 FIN, 4 I, 3 B, 3 S, 3 A, 2 CH, 2 PL, 1 MC, 1 RA, 1 ROU, 1 D, 1 SA, 1 TR, 1 OM, 1 AUS, 1 RUS, 1 EE.

Overall winners
:

1.C.MCRAE/N.GRIST GB/GB SUBARU IMPREZA 4.20.58.1 Gr-A
2.C.SAINZ/L.MOYA E/E TOYOTA COROLLA 4.21.00.2 Gr-A
3.F.LOIX/S.SMEETS B/B TOYOTA COROLLA 4.21.43.9 Gr-A
4.R.BURNS/R.REID GB/GB MITSUBISHI CARISMA GT 4.21.51.2 Gr-A
5.A.VATANEN/F.GALLAGHER SF/GB FORD ESCORT 4.24.18.3 Gr-A
6.P.LIATTI/F.PONS I/I SUBARU IMPREZA 4.24.22.3 Gr-A
7.J.KANKKUNEN/J.REPO FIN/FIN FORD ESCORT 4.24.350 Gr-A
8.G.DE MEVIUS/JM.FORTIN B/B SUBARU IMPREZA 4.27.57.1 Gr-A
9.R.MADEIRA/N.DA SILVA P/P TOYOTA CELICA 4.31.22.2 Gr-A
10.K.HOLOWCZYC/M.WISLAWSKI PL/PL SUBARU IMPREZA 4.32.56.2 Gr-A
16.G.TRELLES/M.CHRISTIE ROU/RA MITSUBISHI LANCER 4.47.41.5 1st Gr-N
18.M.STOHL/P.MULLER A/A MITSUBISHI LANCER 4.52.11.7 2nd Gr-N
21.M.CAMPOS/C.MAGALHAES P/P MITSUBISHI CARISMA GT 4.53.04.3 3rd Gr-N
22.L.CLIMENT/A.ROMANI E/E MITSUBISHI LANCER 4.54.59.8 4th Gr-N



Group N winners
:

16.G.TRELLES/M.CHRISTIE ROU/RA MITSUBISHI LANCER 4.47.41.5 1st Gr-N
18.M.STOHL/P.MULLER A/A MITSUBISHI LANCER 4.52.11.7 2nd Gr-N
21.M.CAMPOS/C.MAGALHAES P/P MITSUBISHI CARISMA GT 4.53.04.3 3rd Gr-N
22.L.CLIMENT/A.ROMANI E/E MITSUBISHI LANCER 4.54.59.8 4th Gr-N



Stages winners
: McRae 9, Sainz 7, Loix 6, Burns 2, Makinen 1, Auriol 1, Kankkunen 1, Gronholm 1.

Rally leaders
: 1 Auriol, 2 Gronholm, 3-28 McRae.

World Championship for Drivers
: Sainz 22, Kankkunen 16, Burns 15, McRae 14, Makinen 10, Vatanen 6, Auriol 4, Liatti 4, Eriksson 3, Rovenpera 2, Gronholm 2, Thiry 1

World Championship for Manufacturers
: Mitsubishi 25, Toyota 25, Ford 23, Subaru 21.


COMMUNIQUE 1

COMMUNIQUE 2

COMMUNIQUE 3


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 DAILY COMMUNIQUE
TOP PAGE



--------------------

Copyright 1998 by Mitsubishi Motors Corporation.