RALLY NEWS NO.8   Kent Showground-Service-Sat. 6pm

1st (9) Francois Duval/JM Fortin (Ford) 1.19.27
2nd (5) Justin Dale/Andrew Bargery (Peugeot) 1.19.31
3rd (7) Martin Rowe/Chris Wood (Ford) 1.19.38
4th (15) Martin Sansom/Phil Wells (Peugeot) 1.21.29
5th (18) Simon Maugher/Andy Street (Proton) 1.28.03

Francois Duval showed a lot of class here today on this Rally of Kent and set some fantastic times in his Pirelli shod Puma through the forest stages to move ahead of Justin Dale.  Peugeot driver Dale slipped from 1st to 3rd when he overshot a corner on stage 10.  This left the Peugeot driver with a lot to do over the final stages.  He pulled out all the stops to just move ahead of Rowe, but couldn't quite catch Duval, finishing 4s behind him.  With the aid of his co-driver J M Fortin, Francois Duval explained "We came hard after Mickey Mouse stages, did well in forests - it is important for Francois, for his career, and gives him a feeling for Rally GB".  Justin Dale commented "We couldn't push any harder, we knew we had to get in front of Martin (Rowe), and that's what we did, to stay ahead in the championship".  Rowe for his part said, "We knew the Peugeot was good on tarmac and we took huge chances in the forests to gain time, but we didn't gain quite enough. A few more forests and we might have been alright".  Martin also reported damaging a rim and knocking the tracking out on a "9 right" corner when the inside of the track was all cut away.  He reckons it may have cost him a few seconds, but that's speculation.

Ford and Peugeot now tie at the top of the Manufacturers points with 85 each, Justin Dale leads the Drivers with 38 pts. to Rowe's 30 and Duval's 14.  A last minute retirement was Max McKillen, his Saxo showing signs of going on fire when a sick engine was sending too much fuel through to the exhaust, and the catalytic converter was doing its best to conflagrate!

Ashford Rally - Garry Jennings has won on a total time of 1.13.28 to increase his lead in the Peugeot Super 106 Cup. Ryan Champion was 2nd with a total of 1.13.40. Daniel Dunbabin, also in a Peugeot was 3rd on 1.14.55. Garry Jennings increases his lead in the 106 Cup to 123 points. Ryan Champion is on 119 and Rory Galligan on 102. Jennings and Champion each have a score to drop on the final round, which will probably mean that in Banbury "winner takes all".  In the Ford Puma Championship, Shaun Woffinden was best placed Puma, just outside the top 3 overall so he takes maximum points. With still 2 stages to go David Bateson was heading for a win the Volkswagen Polo Challenge with Clive Wheeler 2nd. Michael Neuhoff made a late charge to get ahead of Adrian Kermode for 3rd place. Wheeler will still lead the points in the VW Polos with Bateson moving up to a close 2nd.  Many thanks to all who helped us with the RallyNews service here in Kent and well done to all the competitors, particularly those with awards to lift tonight...BRIAN & LIZ PATTERSON


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