CDI Caminos del Inca 2007 gets underway in Lima on Friday

Caminos del Inca 2007 (Incas Rally 2007) For immediate release Thursday, September 13th, 2007 CAMINOS DEL INCA GETS UNDERWAY IN DOWNTOWN LIMA ON FRIDAY EVENING • Peruvian organisers pledge to push Caminos del Inca to new heights • Automóvil Club Peruano hosts reception for international visitors in Lima LIMA (Perú): The 37th Caminos del Inca 2007 (Inca’s Rally) gets underway adjacent to Lima city hall at noon on Friday, prior to the opening super special stage in the Chorrillos district of Lima on Friday evening at 20.00 hrs, which is expected to attract thousands of spectators to the start of Perú’s premier motorsport event. Ahead of an international entry of 87 cars lies a punishing 10-day route of 2,722.90km from Lima to Lima, via gruelling special stages from near sea level and on through the mighty Andes mountain range, passing through the cities of Huancayo, Ayacucho, Andahuaylas, Abancay, Cuzco, Arequipa and Ica. The event is being organised by the Automóvil Club Peruano (ACP), which held a reception on Thursday evening at its headquarters in Lima for senior officials, former winners and foreign visitors. Among those present was Henry Bradley, a seven-time winner of Caminos del Inca and the winner of the first ever event in 1966. Bradley is now working to promote the event internationally and was joined at the Lima reception by 74-year-old veteran Dennis Gonzalez, with whom he took part in a famous race across Argentina in 1962. Gonzalez, whose grandfather survived the Titanic disaster in 1912, is a founder member of the original ACP and finished third in that inaugural1966 race in a BMW. He has lost none of his enthusiasm for Perú’s greatest motorsport event. “I can see this event becoming one of the legendary motorsport events of the world,” insisted Gonzalez. His sentiments were echoed by Bradley, who now resides in Atlanta and is keen to see Caminos del Inca become a key long-distance race with the difference in the world motorsport calendar. “Perú is blessed with the terrain to make one of the greatest races ever,” said Bradley. International drivers from Finland, England, Spain, Equador and the Dominican Republic have spent the last few days making their final preparations and Finnish rally legend Juha Kankkunen has carried out two passes of the Andean route. “We carried out two checks of the route in the last few days and I am glad we actually went out a second time,” insisted Finland’s top seed, four-time WRC champion and world ice speed record holder Kankkunen. “You need to see the stages and the route twice to truly appreciate how awesome this event is and how challenging it will become. The scenery and terrain are stunning. It could become one of the great adventure rallies in the world.” Britain’s Simon Nutter, Howard Paterson and co-drivers Sean Kukula and Ruth Paterson, arrived in Lima on Monday afternoon and have spent the last few days acclimatising to the area before spending some time putting the finishing touches to work on their Group N Skoda Fabias. “This event is quite laid back, but everything has been well organised and appears to be going to plan,” said Nutter. “It is an adventure for our team. We spoke to Juha and he reckons that we will be better off without doing a recce, because we will be driving the cars on blind stages and taking that little extra care. Our cars are not powerful, so it should be interesting to see how they perform at high altitude when all the power is lost.” Northampton-based Kukula and Ruth Paterson, from Market Weighton near York, have spent time translating the detailed road book from Spanish into English, but there have been language problems along the way. As Kukula jokingly admitted: “we literally translated ‘malo piso’ as ‘evil apartment’, but it actually meant ‘rough road’, which was a big relief! We really have a mountain to climb…!” Tomorrow (Friday) teams will tackle a super special stage in the capital after a spectacular start where cars catapult out of an artificial tunnel in tune with a light show. Saturday will be a rest day and the second section of the opening leg resumes near a hydro-electric power station at Moyopampa on Sunday, September 16th. The special runs for 240.60km to Huancayo and includes a pair of tarmac special stages of around 125.5km and 102.1km in length. The first will feature a sinuous climb into the Andes to finish at the polluted zinc, lead and gold mining town of La Oroya. The asphalt special reaches a maximum height of 4,818 metres through the gruelling Anticona Pass before teams descend from Ticlio into La Oroya. The shorter second section heads from La Oroya into Huancayo, a town situated on the left bank of the Mantaro River. Its name comes from the Quechua word meaning ‘place of the large stone’ and is an important commercial centre linking the productive regions of the high rain forest and the central sierra to the Pacific coast. Ends For further media information: Susan Bradley (E-mail: sbradley@rallyworldmagazine.com) or Neil and Angela Perkins, NDP Publicity Services, Mobile: + 44 7831 123153, E-mail: NDPPublicity@compuserve.com, www.ndp-publicity.com (press releases). www.incasrally.com

Date issued: 13/09/2007

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