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Rali Transiberico 2007 Special-Newssection (FIA Cross Country Worldcup)

This is the single-news section of the special of the Rali Transiberico 2007, 1st 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.

Transiberico: Sainz - I’m happy about my first victory for Volkswagen.

Volkswagen repeats last year’s exploit: Volkswagen driver Carlos Sainz clinched his first overall victory in the Race Touareg. The Spaniard, together with his French co-driver Michel Périn, won three of four legs, finishing 7.43 minutes in front of Mitsubishi driver Nani Roma after 1200 timed kilometres. With a 15.40-minute gap, the Portuguese Carlos Sousa and his German co-driver Andreas Schulz in the second Race Touareg captured third place in the FIA Cross-Country Rally World Cup’s season opener.

For the Race Touareg powered by a 285-hp 2.5-litre TDI diesel engine, this marked the sixth overall victory in the Cross-Country World Cup. This brings the prototype’s tally since 2004 to 54 stage victories and 48 days of leading the events. Whereas the two-time World Rally Champion Carlos Sainz celebrated his first overall cross-country rally win, his co-driver Michel Périn already clinched his 25th victory in this discipline, and his fourth in Portugal. Last year, the Volkswagen duo of Giniel de Villiers/Dirk von Zitzewitz had won the rally on the Iberian peninsula.

Kris Nissen (Volkswagen Motorsport Director): "A super result. The technology worked well every day of the event. The driver, co-drivers and the team did a great job. It was our first revenge against Mitsubishi in 2007. But more importantly yet, it was a good preparation for the 2008 Dakar Rally as the first legs in Portugal as well as the final ones in Senegal will be similar. In addition, we made a few smaller strides concerning the suspension. That’s why we’re satisfied across the board."

Carlos Sainz (E): "I’m happy about my first victory for Volkswagen and my first triumph in a cross-country rally. It’s a great success for the team and for me. The four legs were extremely rough, hot and strenuous because we were constantly busy in the cockpit on those twisty tracks. In the beginning, we built a nice advantage and after that kept our pace under control. I want to really thank the entire Volkswagen squad for providing me with a Race Touareg that was absolutely running like a charm throughout the rally."

Michel Périn (F), co-driver: "It was a super rally. Carlos and I worked together perfectly. As both of our backgrounds are in classical rallies, we always prepared notes on the first part of the special stages for the second round, and this probably served us well. This rally was very tough - due to the quick and rough special stages and the long liaison legs we were out for many hours, with only few breaks to get some rest in between. So, this victory makes me all the happier."

Carlos Sousa (P): "My sincere congratulations to Carlos Sainz! He truly deserves this victory. He and Mitsubishi driver Nani Roma have shown a strong performance here. The top four in this event gave everything from the prologue through to the finish. This was probably the fastest rally I’ve ever driven. I’m happy with our podium position. Our Race Touareg was running superbly. What’s more, I like this rally, we last contested it ten years ago. Although the routes have changed since then, I did like these stages as well. Also, the event was well organised and the atmosphere was great everywhere."

Andreas Schulz (D), co-driver: "It’s been a good rally, and third place is a nice success even though I’d been hoping for a little more. We were surprised how good our rivals were on these twisty tracks. Personally, I really liked the tracks that were unusually level for an offroad rally: it’s nice to be able to contest a rally without being shaken about as much as in the rough desert stages in Africa."

2007/06/04 | 11:51 CET | Editor: MR/HS/VW Press

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