acropolis.rally

1996 ACROPOLIS RALLY
Tuesday 4 June
COMMUNIQUE 4

MAKINEN INCREASES WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP LEAD IN GREECE DRIVING MITSUBISHI LANCER


Team Mitsubishi Ralliart Lancer EvolutionIII driver Tommi Makinen increased his lead in the FIA World Rally Championship for Drivers by finishing second on the fouth round, the tree-day Acropolis Rally in Greece, which finished in Athens today, June 4, 1996 The finn, who is co- driven by fellow contryman Seppo Harjanne now lead the series by eight points from Ford's Calos Sainz who finished third.

Makinen used the power and performance of his Lancer to the full over the final, six-stage leg from Kamena Vourla to Athens to launch an attack on rally leader Colin McRae, closing to within 24 seconds of the Subaru driver on stage 18 before being delayed slightly by worn rear tyres on stage 19, finishing the event 50 seconds adrift in second place. Once again the Lancer never faltered over the 153 km of hot, dusty and extremely rough Gred very well in these conditions and even though it was very rough and very hot, it only needed normal routine servicing, and my Michelin tyres were very well suited to these conditions. I attacked for the lead on the last day and I thought I could catch Colin, but in the end it was better not to take any risks. Overall, I am very pleased with my result."

Mitsubishi was also able to celebrate another astonishing victory in Group N, the class for standard production cars, with Uwe Nittel heading a dominant 1-2-3 for Mitsubishi in his Ralliart Germany Lancer Evolution III. Nittel, co-driven by Swede Tina Thorner, also secured 14th overall and together with Makinen's result helped Mitsubishi maintain second place in the FIA World Rally Champor Manufacturers. Uruguay's Gustavo Trelles was second, followed by Belgian Pascal Smets who was delighted with his superb result on his first ever gravel rally.

Team Mitsubishi Ralliart Director Andrew Cowan commented: "We are very satisfied with this result. The Lancer ran perfectly throughout the three days of this very rough and challenging event, and Tommi drove superbly, never putting himself at risk, but always putting pressure on McRae. Second place on this event allows Tommi to increase his lead in the World Championship, which was our target here in Greece, so we are very pleased."

Team Mitsubishi Ralliart is now preparing for the next round of the Asia-Pacific Rally Championship, which takes place in Malaysia on June 15 - 17 where Richard Burns and Kenjiro Shinozuka will drive a pair of Lancer Evolution IIIs, while the next round of the World Rally Championship will be the Rally of Argentina on July 4-6.


OVERALL WINNERS / VAINQUEURS                                                               
1.C. McRae / D. Ringer GB/GB Subaru Impreza 555 5.33.12
2.T. Makinen-S. Harjanne FIN/FINMitsubishi Lancer Evol. III+ 0.50
3.C. Sainz-L. Moya E/E>Ford Escort RS Cosworth+ 3.21
4.P. Liatti-F. Ponz I/ISubaru Impreza 555 + 4.50
5.K. Eriksson-S. Parmander S/SSubaru Impreza 555+ 7.05
6.B. Thiry-S. Prevot GB/GBFord Escort RS Cosworth+ 8.36
7.F. Loix-S. Smeets B/BToyota Celica GT Four+10.01
8.G. Pianezzola-L. Roggia I/IToyota Celica GT Four+15.34
......
14.U. Nittel-T. Thorner D/SMitsubishi Lancer Evol. III1st Gr N +38.51
15.G. Trelles-J. Del Buono ROU/ROUMitsubishi Lancer Evol. III2 Gr N +41.48
17.P. Smets-J.P. SユHeeren B/BMitsubishi Lancer Evol. III3 Gr N +43.14



3rd LEG - Tuesday 4 JUNE : KAMENA VOURLA-PIRAEUS(6 ss - 153,46 km)



08:30 Start from KAMENA VOURLA

13:59/14:14 Regrouping at Aspra Spitia

18:30 Arrival in piraeus,Peace and Friendship Stadium





COMMUNIQUE 1/COMMUNIQUE 2/COMMUNIQUE 3


Copyright 1996 by Mitsubishi Motors Corporation.

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