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Rallye dos Sertoes: Carlos Sainz takes lead in Brazil

Rallye dos Sertoes, Leg 02, 25 June 2009

The Volkswagen factory duo Carlos Sainz/Lucas Cruz Senra (E/E) took the lead on the second day of the Rallye dos Sertoes in front of their team-mates Nasser Al-Attiyah/Timo Gottschalk (Q/D).

On the demanding route between Santa Helena de Goias and Cidade de Goias, which put drivers and co-drivers to the test with many changes in rhythm, tricky branch-offs and a mix of trial-like and quick gravel sections, Sainz/Cruz Senra beat the newly formed pairing Al-Attiyah/Gottschalk who had opened the special stage as the previous day’s winners. For the third crew of the factory prepared and factory fielded Race Touareg vehicles the day was marked by misfortune: Mauricio Neves/Eduardo Bampi (BR/BR) damaged their front suspension in an evasive manoeuvre on a bridge and lost a lot of time in the process. The Brazilian duo will continue the rally on the third leg.

Kris Nissen (Volkswagen Motorsport Director)
“The second leg of the Rallye dos Sertoes was a tricky one. Nasser Al-Attiyah and Timo Gottschalk opened a leg for the first time and coordinated their actions in the competition in extremely difficult conditions. With a stage win they – as well as Carlos Sainz and Lucas Cruz Senra – showed how well balanced these new teams are acting.”

#301 – Carlos Sainz (E), 1st place leg / 1st place overall
“Today’s stage really had everything that is typical of a cross-country rally. Trial-like sections, many changes in rhythm and branch-offs that made navigating a demanding task. For us, this was truly an acid test which we successfully passed as a team and the Race Touareg, as well, was up to par in all conditions.”

#302 – Nasser Al-Attiyah (Q), 2nd place leg / 2nd place overall
“Today, my co-driver Timo Gottschalk and I primarily focused on coordinating our actions as best we could for this challenge. Opening the stage is never an easy task. I think we handled it well, even though we misjudged two branch-offs which cost us some time.”

#309 – Mauricio Neves (BR)
“On a narrow bridge that consisted only of a few boards, a motorcycle rider was stuck in a gap on the right-hand side. The only chance we had was to pass him on the left. Unfortunately, we got too far to the left and damaged our rear suspension in the process.”

Number of the day A major portion of the special stages of the 2009 Rallye dos Sertoes have never been driven before and are totally new territory for the contenders. Compared with last year, 90 per cent of the routes are on the agenda for the first time.

Interim standings after leg 02, Santa Helena de Goias (GO) – Cidade de Goias (GO)
334 km/469 km SS 02/total

Pos. – Team – Vehicle – Leg 02 – Total time
1 Carlos Sainz/Lucas Cruz Senra (E/E), Volkswagen Race Touareg 2, 3h 59m 08.7 (1), 6h 35m 01.2
2 Nasser Al-Attiyah/Timo Gottschalk (Q/D), Volkswagen Race Touareg 2, 4h 06m13.4 (2), + 1m 40.3
3 Riamburgo Ximenes/Stanger Eller (BR/BR), Sherpa, 4h 27m 35.9 (3), + 41m 57.1
4 Jean Azevedo/Youssef Haddad (BR/BR), Mitsubishi L200, 4h 30m 43.5 (4), + 42m 44.0
5 Reinaldo Varela/Marcos (BR/BR), Mitsubishi L200, 4h 36m 07.5 (5), + 53m 18.1

Provinces GO: Goias; TO: Tocatins; BA: Bahia; PE: Pernambuco; CE: Ceara; RN: Rio Grande do Norte

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