Sat 11 Jun 2022

Pellier sets pace as title contenders hit trouble in Poland

Laurent Pellier leads ERC4 and Junior ERC at the end of Saturday's first full leg of Orlen 78th Rally Poland as title protagonists Andrea Mabellini and Anthony Fotia both ran into mechanical misfortunes.

  • Full coverage from Rally Poland is available on WRC+ All Live here, including every stage broadcast as it happens as well as key interviews, features and expert analysis from the service park.

Looking to extend his Junior ERC Championship lead following his victory on the Canarias curtain-raiser last month, Opel Corsa driver Pellier was impressively consistent again.

The Frenchman won the day’s opening two stages and never placed lower than third to head into the overnight service halt holding a two-second margin over his closest pursuer.

That advantage had been as large as 13 seconds, but a big push by Toni Herranen over the afternoon loop – the young Finn winning three of the day’s seven speed tests behind the wheel of his Ford Fiesta – reduced the gap substantially by the end of the evening’s super special, setting the scene for a dramatic duel for supremacy tomorrow.

Oscar Palomo is 40sec back in third following a string of top five times in his Peugeot 208 and a stage win on SS5. The Spaniard is poised to make a major gain in the championship with the only two drivers ahead of him in the standings – Andrea Mabellini and Anthony Fotia – finding themselves forced into retirement.

The 15.2km Krzywe test was not kind to either of the Toksport drivers, with Fotia suffering engine failure on the first pass and Mabellini breaking a driveshaft on the second run. The Italian is expected to rejoin the action on Sunday.

Adam Sroka repeated his Friday super special performance by topping the times in Mikołajki Arena this evening, but a loss of almost 1m30sec during the morning loop restricted the home hero to fifth overall, behind Justas Simaška in fourth.

Starts: Thursday, July 18, 2024 at 4:31:00 AM
Starts: Friday, July 26, 2024 at 7:00:00 AM
Starts: Saturday, July 27, 2024 at 6:00:00 AM