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OiLibya Rally 2009 Special-Newssection (FIA Cross Country Worldcup)

This is the single-news section of the special of the OiLibya Rally 2009, second round of the FIA Worldcup for Cross Country Rallys. To see all news please use the link under the article or navigate with the left main-navigation.

OiLibya Rally: Terranova and Coma take command in Tunisia.

The sun shines on the first really stage (Stage 2 after Prologue) taking the competitors from Tunis to Oued Mellah on Thursday. The 60 km of today´s stage posed few problems, just the occasional close encounters with some cactus for a few and a problematic deviation for the lead riders. Finally, in the bike class the Spaniard Marc Coma took the victory ahead of David Casteu and Francisco "Chaleco" Lopez.

In the cars the X-raid BMW´s chased each other. After Guerlain Chicherit yesterday it was the turn of the Argentinian Orlando Terranova and his Portuguese Co-Driver Filipe Palmeiro to win the special ahead of the Russian Leonid Novitskiy in the 3rd BMW X3CC. Nicolas Misslin takes the third place in his new Ex-works-Mitsubishi MPR13, 10 seconds ahead of Christian Lavieille in his Nissan Dessoude Proto. Fitfth was the BMW X3 of the French Skiing-Artist Guerlain Chicherit and the "Patron" Jean-Louis Schlesser (with new Porsche engine in his buggy) who, as is often is his tactic, playing a waiting game.

Another buggy, that of Regis Delahaye, rolled several times right in front of Eric Vigouroux. In the lead in the Wildcat Trophy, Jerome Pelichet struggled to find his rythme this morning, though his navigator Eugenie Decre was delighted with the 60 kilometres of ‘real’ rally-raid special.

In the T2 class Christian Barbier takes the first place in his Mitsubishi ahead of Francois Lethier (Toyota) with Michele de Nora, also aboard a Toyota, completing the "podium". In T4 category the Renault Kerax truck of the Coquelle-Becart-Lefevre crew is in the lead ahead of the Man of Coudereau-Micquiaux-Kedzierski.

In the Cars-Open Class, the SSV of Fred Alard continues its charge. The buggy is improving in reliability and the driver is enjoying himself immensely - for the moment everything is going according to plan!

A special stage of 60 kilometres, technical, twisty and slippery through the cactus and the puddles - Thursday’s programme on the 27th Rally OiLibya of Tunisia. A detour put in place by the organisers, so as to avoid a field, caused a few problems, with certain losing precious minutes, though of course the race has only just begun.

Marc Coma (Repsol KTM) remains calm in the knowledge that only a few kilometres have so far been raced. Taking the lead today is no guarantee of victory in 8 days time. In the 450 class Olivier Pain also got a little lost, while Luca Manca pulled off the exploit of the day. The tough Italian takes the class lead and finishes 4th on the special. Christian Califano got a ton of dust in his eyes which bothered him for much of the day. Virginie Premat, the only lady rider on two wheels, crossed the line with several bits of cactus artistically stuck to her helmet.

On the quads Lionel Laine increases his overall lead over Karim Dilou while the Russian Vladimir Marugov and the Italian Camelia Liparoti are neck and neck after Camelia got lost on the going.

Tomorrow the Rally OiLibya of Tunisia heads towards the Libyian border, before stopping for the night at Rael Oue. A 365 km stage, of which 356 km are special - and a little foretaste of the sand to come.

2009/04/23 | 22:38 CET | Editor: MR/HS/Lydie Arpizou

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