FIA WRC

Ogier claims fifth Portugal victory

A fifth Rally de Portugal victory for Sébastien Ogier has taken the Ford Fiesta RS WRC/Michelin star’s personal tally to 40 world class wins and level with Markku Alèn as the event’s most successful driver. The Frenchman has also established a new record for the highest number of WRC points scored at this level. He was joined on Sunday’s podium by Hyundai i20 Coupé WRC/Michelin rivals Thierry Neuville and Dani Sordo.

FIA WRC

WRC: Neuville claims Argentina win by 7/10ths of a second!

Thierry Neuville (Hyundai i20 Coupé WRC/Michelin) won the 2017 Rally Argentina by the margin of just seven-tenths of a second to beat Welshman Elfyn Evans (Ford Fiesta RS WRC) after 357.59km of competitive action! Ott Tanak (Ford Fiesta RS WRC/Michelin) was third.

FIA WRC

Neuville claims Corsica win for Hyundai/Michelin

Thierry Neuville earned a handsome victory for Hyundai Motorsport in Corsica to become the fourth different winner of a WRC round from four starts this year. Michelin’s score on the Mediterranean island now stands at 25 outright victories with 11 different makes since the championship’s creation in 1973.

After coming close to taking the top prize in Monte Carlo and Sweden, Thierry Neuville kept his head in Corsica to claim his first win of 2017 in the new Hyundai i20 Coupé WRC/Michelin.

After easing ahead following the retirement of early leader Kris Meeke (Citroën C3/Michelin), whose engine failed after SS6, the Belgian took advantage of the hydraulic problems that slowed world champion Sébastien Ogier (Ford/Michelin) to pull out a big gap. He then went on to secure the second Tour de Corse win of his career after his success there in 2011 when the event wasn’t a round of the WRC. The inaugural Tour de Corse in 1956 was won by another Belgian, lady driver Gilberte Thirion.

After victories for Ogier/Ford in Monte Carlo, Latvala/Toyota in Sweden and Meeke/Citroën in Mexico, Neuville and Hyundai Motorsport are this season’s fourth different winners. The last time four different makes won the four opening rounds of the WRC was in 1986 (Lancia, Peugeot, Renault and Toyota), and the last time four different drivers did likewise was in 1998 (Sainz, Mäkinen, Burns and McRae).

Meanwhile, Michelin won the Tour de Corse as a WRC round for the 25th time, in association with an 11th different manufacturer partner and a 16th different model. Its first victory on the French isle was in 1973 with Alpine-Renault and Jean-Pierre Nicolas and it has won there since with Lancia, Porsche, Renault, Peugeot, BMW, Ford, Toyota, Citroën, Volkswagen and, now, Hyundai.

The late, thrilling battle for second and third spots opposed Sébastien Ogier, Dani Sordo, Jari-Matti Latvala and Craig Breen. Hyundai’s Spaniard came close to clinching the silver medal when Ogier lost time due to an electrical issue on Sunday morning, but Ford’s star fought back to retrieve second place on the Power Stage. The final test also saw Latvala (Toyota/Michelin) squeeze past Breen (Citroën/Michelin) to claim fourth by just one-tenth of a second!

Skoda Motorsport and Michelin continued their domination in WRC2 thanks this time to Norway’s Andreas Mikkelsen who was joined on the podium by Finn Teemu Suninen (Ford/Michelin) and Frenchman Yohan Rossel (Citroën/Michelin). Third was actually Stéphane Sarrazin (Skoda/Michelin), but he is not registered for the championship.

Next round: Rally Argentina (April 28-30).

MOTOGP™

MotoGP: a flawless weekend for Viñales at Le Mans

Maverick Viñales (Movistar Yamaha MotoGP) produced a grand-slam performance at the HJC Helmets Grand Prix de France, round five of the 2017 MotoGPTM World Championship. The Spaniard added pole position and fastest race lap to his third win of the season. Second and third were local star Johann Zarco (Monster Yamaha Tech3) and Dani Pedrosa (Repsol Honda Team). 

FIA Formula E

Paris ePrix: Buemi triumphs in French capital

Sébastien Buemi (Renault e.dams) followed up his victory in Monaco last week with another at Saturday’s Paris ePrix, ahead of Lopez and Heidfeld. A mistake by rival Lucas di Grassi (Abt Schaeffler Audi Sport) helped him to comfort his cushion at the top of the provisional Drivers’ standings.

MOTOGP™

MotoGP: next stop Le Mans, France

Round five of the 2017 MotoGPTM World Championship, and the second to take place on European soil, is this weekend’s HJC Helmets Grand Prix de France at Le Mans-Bugatti. 

FIA Formula E

Monaco ePrix: Buemi beats di Grassi in the Principality

Pole-winner Sébastien Buemi (Renault e.dams) led from lights-out to the flag in Monaco to claim his fourth ePrix win of the 2016/2017 season. Lucas di Grassi (Abt Schaeffler Audi Sport) and Nick Heidfeld (Mahindra Racing) were second and third.

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