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Botturi, Souday and De Seynes/Liparoti crew on course for Sardegna Rally Race victory – Botturi also in lead of Italian TT Raid.

With one more day remaining in the Goldentyre Sardegna Rally Race, Alessandro Botturi is firmly on course for his second Sardinian victory in the category of bikes, Sebastien Souday still tops the legion of quads while the French SSV crew De Seynes/Liparoti is within reach of the top place in the newest Side by Side adventure of the most enjoyable rally-raid in the world.

The shortest test of a 5-days challenge was cut in two special stages of 52,46 km and 35,03 respectively, yet the shortest doesn’t mean the least demanding … considering also the yesterday’s feast under the old trees of the sanctuary of Sa Itria. The magical energies of the sacred place helped to release the tension after the first half of the Marathon stage and created stronger bonds in the Sardegna Rally Race community. If we had to point out only thing that marked the 10th edition of the legendary rally race, we would say camaraderie.

Maurizio Gerini (ITA) Husqvarna © RallyZone

The second part of the Marathon stage took the competitors back to the “crime scene”, to the first race headquarters and the paddock in San Teodoro, the base of Bike Village, where all had started and will again start tomorrow for the final, 223 km long loop stage around San Teodoro. Today’s special tests were again navigated and quite technical. At yesterday’s briefing the track manager Dario Del Vecchio had warned the competitors: “Concentration to the maximum – tomorrow it takes nothing to get lost.” Copied. And indeed, only the best managed to finish the track without deviations. Alessandro Botturi was the fastest of all and is leading the category with comfortable 10 minutes of advantage . At the end of the second special a 42-years old from Brescia said: “It was a great stage, hot and dusty, but that’s the way it is. My bike went well and I did a good job. I only wish to be that fast tomorrow, make no mistakes and win the race.”

Just a few seconds away was the second man of the day, Maurizio Gerini – 32 year-old is winning bottles of champagne for his daily results, though his dreams of the final podium had been shattered by mechanical problems already in the second stage. The winner of yesterday’s first half of the Marathon stage Mena Oriol Valdearcos finished the day in third, with Andrea Mancini and Mirko Pavan filling the top five spots.

All quiet in the category of quads: Sebastien Souday won both today’s special stages and leads confidently in the overall classification. The two Poles, Rafal Sonik and Kamil Wisniewski, completed a provisional podium in the race of quads.

Eric De Seynes, partnered by Camelia Liparoti, still leads the overall classification in SSV category, even if the two special stages of the fourth stage of the race were won by the Italian crew Ercolani/Politino. The two (ex) riders, first time on a board of a Side by Side car, are having time of their lives. “I would never think that driving a SSV is such fun,” said Enricone, and added: “We managed to complete a nearly perfect stage. Even Paolo didn’t make a single mistake reading the notes.”

1. Alessandro Botturi (ITA) Yamaha 1h50.10.42
2. Maurizio Gerini (ITA) Husqvarna 1h50.14.52
3. Oriol Mena (SPA) Honda 1h54.04.34
4. Andrea Mancini (ITA) Beta 1h56.24.98
5. Mirko Pavan (ITA) Beta 1h56.42.16
6. Alessandro Cavicchi (ITA) Husqvarna 1h59.13.29
7. Roberto Barbieri (ITA) Husqvarna 2h00.35.45
8. Txomin Arana (SPA) Yamaha 2h00.40.91
9. Cristian Espana Munoz (SPA) KTM 2h01.25.69
10. Sebastien Souday (FRA) Yamaha 2h02.20.38


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