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Rally dos Sertoes: Volkswagen continues setting the pace at "Sertoes”.

The Volkswagen three-pack on the third leg: Carlos Sainz/Lucas Cruz Senra (E/E), Nasser Al-Attiyah/Timo Gottschalk (Q/D) and Maurício Neves/Eduardo Bampi (BR/BR) finished the third leg of the Rallye dos Sertões in places one, two and three. The fastest time on the stage between Cidade de Goiás and Minaçu was set by Nasser Al-Attiyah, who is at the wheel of a Race Touareg for the first time in Brazil.

On the 317 kilometres of the special stage with tight, twisty sections on gravel and narrow trails the factory duos in the 280-hp diesel prototypes from Wolfsburg delivered a cohesive team performance: Carlos Sainz finished the third day 58 seconds behind Nasser Al-Attiyah by setting the second-best time and thus defended an overall lead of 42 seconds. The Brazilian pairing Maurício Neves/Eduardo Bampi was classified with the third-best time, ten minutes behind stage winner Al-Attiyah.

"Today, the entire squad delivered a cohesive performance on what has been the most demanding leg of the rally so far. After 317 kilometres, all three teams came within ten minutes of each other although the drivers as well as the navigators had to work with full concentration and the ‘Brazilian’ car had to overtake numerous other vehicles,” said Volkswagen Motorsport Director Kris Nissen.

"It was a really strenuous leg which we tackled by taking calculated risks. In the early stages there were many tight, twisty passages which had to be driven with extreme precision. We were able to drive faster only on the last 80 kilometres. On the whole it was a good stage for us,” said Carlos Sainz.

"We took things with a bit more caution today because the demands have increased yet again. So, I’m more than happy with the result. For me, completing as many kilometres in the car and gathering experiences and impressions is still the most important aspect. ‘Well done’ to my co-driver Timo Gottschalk, who did a very good job today,” said Nasser Al-Attiyah.

"This was a stage full of variety! Many jumps, narrow trails and lots of gravel demanded full concentration, particularly the numerous overtaking manoeuvres, because after our unfortunate day yesterday we had to pass many cars. That cost us some time. After our cautious start we attacked in the end,” said Maurício Neves.

2009/06/29 | 13:53 CET | Editor: MR/Volkswagen/Rita Konya

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