CDI Jochamovitz reduces the lead of Ricardo Dasso into Arequipa
Caminos del Inca 2007 (Inca’s Rally 2007)
For immediate release
Friday, September 21st, 2007
DASSO’S OVERALL LEAD IN CAMINOS DEL INCA
TRIMMED BY JOCHAMOVITZ INTO AREQUIPA
Peruvian Luis Alayza de Losada loses third place to Ronmel Palomino
Finland’s Kankkunen up to seventh but loses gears into Arequipa
AREQUIPA (Perú): Peruvians Ricardo Dasso and Michael Baca maintained their overall lead in the 37th Caminos del Inca 2007 (Inca’s Rally) after the 510.25km fourth leg between Cuzco and Arequipa across the high plateau region of the Peruvian Andes on Friday. But Dasso was coming under increasing pressure from Ernesto Jochamovitz heading into the final two days of the event, which finishes in Lima on Sunday evening.
Dasso had begun the day with a 12m 28s advantage over Jochamovitz when the official results were eventually calculated in Cuzco, but his rival was in stunning form on the varied 362.20km eighth stage, which began over open gravel tracks and then headed along a narrow pass above an azure blue mountain lake, before winding its way on to the high plateau on fast, flowing gravel roads through remote mountain villages at altitudes between 3,900 and 4,410 metres above sea level.
Jochamovitz beat Dasso by 7m 04s to reduce the long-term leader’s advantage to just 5m 24s, heading into the final tarmac special stage along the main highway from Pampa Cańahuas to Arequipa. He beat his rival by 3m 21s on the high-speed tarmac test and headed into Arequipa an unofficial 2m 03s behind Dasso. Peruvian Luis Alayza de Losada lost third overall after being displaced by Ronmel Palomino on the gravel stage.
Young Raul Orlandini continued his climb through the field by setting the second fastest time on the gravel stage, as he began to pressurise Ricardo Palomino for fifth place. A stunning fastest time of 24m 41s followed on the shortened tarmac special stage and he lies in striking distance of Palomino for the final leg.
Juha Kankkunen began the day in ninth, but held little hope of entering the top five, although sixth place was definitely on the cards. “You know I am used to driving World Rally Cars and being able to push on these stages,” said Kankkunen. “But with a Group N car on Safari-type tracks it is impossible. On the long day into Cuzco I hit a rock and we had a flat tyre after about 10km, then we broke a shock absorber and I had to finish that stage and the next one with crippled suspension.
“We managed to get the car repaired in Abancay and were fast on the tarmac stage, but it was a frustrating time on the longest day of the event. Now it is just a case of reaching the finish in one piece and trying to make up some places.”
The Finn was fourth fastest on the final gravel stage of this year’s Caminos del Inca out of Cuzco and that was sufficient to push him up to seventh overall at the expense of Gino Valerga and Fernando Ferrand. He followed that by setting the second fastest time on the tarmac special, despite only having first, third and fifth gears and no power steering. “At least the steering wheel did not come off this time,” joked the Finn, who now lies seventh.
The two British crews had experienced mixed fortunes: Simon Nutter and Sean Kukula were unable to repair their stricken Fabia in Hyancayo and were forced to return to Lima for repairs to be carried out at the Volkswagen dealer. The plan of action was to drive from Lima to Arequipa and at least complete the final leg of the event on Sunday, but even that failed to materialise.
Howard and Ruth Paterson somehow guided their Fabia across the Andes and reached Cuzco in 29th and last position in the overall rankings, but they were well placed to complete the final leg and reach the finish in Lima after finishing the last gravel stage into Imata in 4h 24m 49s.
“The day between Ayacucho and Cuzco was the most difficult I have ever experienced,” said Paterson, who had again suffered shock absorber problems and had a side window broken by a stone.
All teams will benefit from a service and rest day in Arequipa on Saturday before embarking on the final 998km fifth leg between Arequipa and Lima on Sunday, September 23rd. This daunting, although quite straightforward, section takes in an arduous trek along the Pan Americana highway and crosses several eco-systems and a diverse range of terrain and weather conditions.
From Arequipa the route heads towards the Pacific coast on Sunday and passes through Nasca, en route to Palpa, Ica, Pisco, San Vicente de Caneta and further north to Lima.
This road passes through a hostile desert region around Nasca, Peruvian coastal desert and fertile valleys. The route skirts Palpa - famous for its orange and plum trees and cotton fields – and on towards Ica, which is surrounded by cotton fields and is the centre of the Peruvian wine industry.
There will be three special stages of 547.50km, 133.10km and 109km in length. The first tarmac stage will take crews from Arequipa to the historic city of Nasca, the second heads from Nasca to Ica and the third runs from Cerro Azul to Peaje Villa, before a final liaison takes crews into Lima and the first night at a more bearable altitude for over a week.
The Pisco coastal area en route was decimated by a large earthquake on August 15th this year and teams will pass through the town before heading due north on the final run into the capital, via San Vicente de Caneta and Mala, and on to the ceremonial finish in Lima.
Caminos del Inca 2007 – positions on Cuzco to Imata stage (362.20km – SS8):
1. Ernesto Jochamowitz (PE)/Gustavo Medina (PE) Mitsubishi Outlander 3h 05m 26s
2. Raul Orlandini (PE)/Diego Zuloaga (PE) Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution 3h 09m 34s
3. Ricardo Dasso (PE)/Michael Baca (PE) Subaru Impreza WRX STi 3h 12m 30s
4. Juha Kankkunen (FIN)/Seppo Harjanne (FIN) Subaru Impreza WRX 3h 18m 50s
5. Ricardo Palomino (PE)/Eduardo Arimbongo (PE) Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX 3h 19m 42s
6. Ronmel Palomino (PE)/Wilman Palomino (PE) Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VIII 3h 20m 29s, etc
Caminos del Inca 2007 – positions on Pampa Cańahuas to Arequipa stage (82.00km – SS9):
1. Raul Orlandini (PE)/Diego Zuloaga (PE) Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution 24m 41s
2. Juha Kankkunen (FIN)/Seppo Harjanne (FIN) Subaru Impreza WRX 24m 54s
3. Ernesto Jochamowitz (PE)/Gustavo Medina (PE) Mitsubishi Outlander 25m 09s
4. Luis Alayza de Losada (PE)/Ive Bromberg (PE) Subaru Forester WRX 26m 14s
5. Ronmel Palomino (PE)/Wilman Palomino (PE) Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VIII 26m 30s
6. Fernando Ferrand (PE)/Fernando Ferrand (PE) Nissan Pick-Up 27m 31s, etc
Caminos del Inca 2007 – overall positions after leg four (unofficial @ 16.00hrs)
1. Ricardo Dasso (PE)/Michael Baca (PE) Subaru Impreza WRX 14h 52m 40s
2. Ernesto Jochamowitz (PE)/Gustavo Medina (PE) Mitsubishi Outlander 14h 54m 43s
3. Ronmel Palomino (PE)/Wilman Palomino (PE) Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VIII 15h 27m 26s
4. Luis Alayza de Losada (PE)/Ive Bromberg (PE) Subaru Forester WRX 15h 31m 14s
5. Ricardo Palomino (PE)/Eduardo Arimbongo (PE) Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX 15h 42m 26s
6. Raul Orlandini (PE)/Diego Zuloaga (PE) Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution 15h 47m 12s
7. Juha Kankkunen (FIN)/Seppo Harjanne (FIN) Subaru Impreza WRX 16h 12m 43s
8. Fernando Ferrand (PE)/Fernando Ferrand (PE) Nissan Pick-Up 16h 22m 54s
9. Gino Valerga (PE)/Pedro Romero (PE) Mazda 3 16h 26m 54s, etc
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