WRC Rashid Al-Ketbi climbs back to fourth overall at Monte Carlo Rally
Monte Carlo Rally
FIA World Rally Championship (WRC), round 1
For immediate release
Friday, January 18th, 2013
SKYDIVE DUBAI RALLY TEAM’S AL-KETBI CLIMBS BACK
TO FOURTH OVERALL IN WRC2 AT MONTE CARLO RALLY
· Emirati star sets impressive stage times in vile conditions
· German Sepp Wiegand leads WRC2; Seb Loeb in overall command
MONTE CARLO (France): Skydive Dubai Rally Team (UAE) driver Rashid Al-Ketbi and his German co-driver Karina Hepperle continued their impressive climb back through the field after leaving the road for six minutes on the second stage of the Monte Carlo Rally.
Despite treacherous stage conditions in the Ardeche region of southern France, the Skydive Dubai Rally Team duo had moved up to fourth overall in the WRC2 category of the opening round of the FIA World Rally Championship after 11 special stages on Friday.
They had fallen to the rear of the field after that indiscretion on Wednesday morning, but a resilient Al-Ketbi dug deep and began to press home his challenge, despite the presence of ice and snow on the twisty mountain tarmac stages that make the Monte one of the greatest challenges in world rallying.
“Leaving the road was unfortunate and not the start we wanted,” insisted Al-Ketbi. “But we have set some good times since then and really moved back into contention. I caught four cars in front of me yesterday and will just keep pushing now to the finish.”
German driver Sepp Wiegand led the WRC2 category in his Skoda Fabia S2000 after 11 special stages, the German moving into a 4min 12sec lead over fellow countryman Armin Kremer. Yuriy Protosov was third in his Subaru Impreza.
Defending World Champion Sébastien Loeb led the main event by 1min 34sec from former team-mate Sébastien Ogier after the tricky special stage between Lamastre, Gilhoc and Alboussier and extended his advantage by a further two seconds through SS11.
There will be a further five timed special stages on Saturday before the official podium finish at 11.00hrs outside the Place du Palais in Monaco on Sunday. In total there are 18 stages offering a total of 465km of competition.
The Skydive Dubai Rally Team is running in the 2013 WRC under the patronage of Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al-Maktoum, Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Dubai Sports Council,
Neil Perkins, NDP Publicity Services, UK mobile: + 44 7831 123153, E-mail: email@example.com
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