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The Citroën Racing Trophy looks to 2010

Posted: December 23, 2009 11:09 PM - 4654 Hits

CITROEN RACING TROPHIES 2010 (IRELAND & UK)

Posted: December 23, 2009 11:09 PM

Details of next year’s Citroen Racing Trophy for the C2R2 Max competitors reveals a hugely rewarding package, with high rewards for Citroen success.

The UK version of the Citroen Racing Trophy will be based wholly on the British Rally Championship and the Irish version on the Tarmac Championship. In both cases the Citroens will compete over the full two days of each of the rallies.

The prize money on each rally will range from €5,000 for 1st in GpR down to €600 for 8th position, making almost €20,000 available on each and every rally. The prize money will be paid on position in class rather than just being divided among the Citroen drivers. At season end Citroen Racing in France will produce a points table of each drivers best results and the prize will be €10,000 for 1st, €6,000 for 2nd and €3,000 for 3rd.

Even at this early stage interest is high particularly in the UK series. Defending Citroen UK Champion Marty McCormack is already hard at work re-building his Citroen C2R2 Max for the coming season, and intends contesting not just the British series, but selected European rallies as well. Marty’s original red C2R2 is being re-built into ‘Max’ specification and it is expected that Australian girl Molly Taylor will drive it on the British Championship. 21 year old Molly also hopes to do selected Irish events in an effort to increase her asphalt experience.

Current Irish Citroen Champion Adrian McElhinney is planning to again contest the Irish series and in addition Donegal man Adrian is hoping to compete on selected UK events and further afield. Citroen UK, who also now control Citroen Ireland, is taking an active interest in both series in 2010.

More Details Email: RaymondMoore@charleshurstgroup.co.uk


The Irish Series follows the Tarmac Championship: The UK Series follows the British Rally Championship

The Citroën Racing Trophy looks to 2010

Posted: December 23, 2009 10:07 PM

The Rallye du Var in France was the last event on the eight Citroën Racing Trophy programmes, concluding the season with another inspired performance from the Citroën drivers. The different Trophy series organised by Citroën Racing have been a huge success in France and in other European countries, where the Citroën C2-R2 MAX and C2 Super 1600 have triumphed and claimed titles.

The flexibility of the formula, the competitiveness of Citroën’s products and the realistic chance of winning prize money has provoked interest that has surpassed expectations. Having attracted a large number of competitors, an even bigger and better Citroën Racing Trophy will be back in 2010. A final classification will be drawn up within the three different types of event that the French Citroën Racing Trophy drivers can take part in. An end of year prize will also be awarded to the drivers scoring the most points. New countries such as Switzerland are additionally joining the series by setting up a Trophy programme – further expanding the choice of events available to Citroën customers. The Citroën Racing Trophy’s popularity in 2009 is sure to be carried over into 2010, with all the Citroën drivers eager to get stuck into some more action…

SUMMARY

    UK: Jason Pritchard wins the Tempest Rally.
    Belgium/Luxembourg: Neuville unstoppable on the Condroz Rally.
    Ireland: McElhinney is crowned champion.
    Poland: Tomasz Porebski wins the Group R title.
    Portugal: A third victory for Gomes, Antunes wins the drivers’ title, Citroën claims the constructors’ championship.
    Romania: Alex Filip ends the season on a high.
    Czech Republic: Miroslav Plíhal is sixth on the Bohemia Rally.
    Switzerland: The 2010 Citroën Racing Trophy is successfully launched on the Rallye de Valais.
    France: Manu Gascou wins Group R on the Cardabelles Rally and is the best of the Trophy drivers on the Cévennes. Thierry Neuville is fourth on the Antibes Rally. Thierry Venturini matches him on the Vaucluse Rally. At the Coupe de France regional rallies final, Marc Amourette triumphs in a hotly-contested Group N field. Bryan Bouffier finishes just off the podium on the Rallye du Var.
UK
TEMPEST RALLY
Pritchard brings a breath of fresh air
This rally, based at Aldershot in southern England, does not form part of the Citroën Racing Trophy UK calendar. So Jason Pritchard’s mission, together with his new co-driver Robbie Durrant, was simply to find a good rhythm on the event – which was exclusively reserved for two-wheel drive cars. The Builth Wells driver then took advantage of the adjustable suspension on his C2-R2 MAX to adapt his car to the territory, take the lead, and claim a well-deserved victory. It was his first overall win and the second for the C2-R2 MAX, following Thierry Neuville’s triumph at the ADAC Rallye Kohle und Stahl.

BELGIUM
CONDROZ
Thierry Neuville ends the year on a high
Following the cancellation of the Luxembourg Rally, the Citroën Racing Trophy Belux drivers found themselves at the start of the 36th Rallye du Condroz in the Huy region of Belgium. The presence of Dutchman Hans Weijs, who won the Junior World Rally Championship class in Catalunya, added extra spice to the occasion. Initially, he placed his C2-R2 MAX backed by the Dutch motorsport federation ahead of Thierry Neuville’s similar car, entered by the RACB National Team. Neuville had never driven in slippery conditions like these before, and took his time to learn the roads. Then he fought back. The young Belgian was already in the lead when Weijs made a couple of mistakes, and despite two punctures Neuville eventually triumphed. He ended up winning both Group R and the two-wheel drive category on the event. Caren Burton inherited second following a puncture for David Croes, who was happy with third on his Trophy debut.

IRELAND
WEXFORD
McElhinney wins the Ireland Trophy
On the Wexford Rally, points were awarded after each of the two legs. On the first day, Paul Manton was the quickest driver to take maximum points. Adrian McElhinney and his co-driver Shane Buckley were slowed by an alternator problem, a flattened exhaust and a troublesome clutch cable. However, this did not stop them from eventually finishing fourth and scoring enough points to seal the Trophy. With the title race over, leg two started off in exactly the same way. Manton dominated before going off the road. McElhinney took advantage of this in order to confirm his title with an extra victory.

POLAND
DOLNOSLASKI
Porebski crowned Polish champion
At the end of the 17 stages that made up the 19th Rajd Dolnoslaski, the final round of the Polska Trophy, Tomasz Porebski finished sixth overall and first of the C2-R2 MAX runners. The Citroëns were at the forefront of the action, thanks to one second-fastest and two third-fastest stage times. Porebeski became Polish Group R and A6 champion, ahead of Marcin Dobrowolski and Jan Chmielewski.

PORTUGAL
MORTAGUÀ
Gomes fifth
The penultimate round of the Portuguese Championship and the Citroën Racing Trophy Portugal took place on the Rally de Mortaguà, to the north of Lisbon between Coimbra and Viseu. This all-asphalt event did not favour Paulo Antunes. A radiator problem cost him a lot of time on SS2. Nonetheless, he fought his way back up the leaderboard to score two points that proved vital for the two-litre, two-wheel drive championship. Fédérico Gomes finished as the highest-placed Citroën driver for the second consecutive time, claiming fifth in Group R.

ALGARVE
Antunes and Citroën scoop titles
Fédérico Gomes was the top-placed Citroën driver for the third time on the all-asphalt Algarve Rally, the final round of the championship. At the end of the event, where he scored five all-important points in his C2-R2 MAX, Paulo Antunes claimed the drivers’ title and Citroën took the constructors’ championship in the two-litre, two-wheel drive category.

ROMANIA
RALIUL ARGESULLUI
Alex Filip wraps up the Trophy
The third and final event of the Citroën Racing Trophy Romania, the Raliul Argesului, was once more claimed by Alex Filip/Bogdan Iancu – who also triumphed in the opening round, the Tara Basei Rally. The series only got underway in the middle of the season but it has already made a promising start.

CZECH REPUBLIC
BOHEMIA
Plihal takes it to the MAX
The host town for the final round of the Czech Rally Championship and the Citroën Racing Trophy CZ was Mlada Boleslav in the region of Liberec, close to Prague. Some heavy snowfall forced the organisers to modify the itinerary at the last minute. Lukáš Pondělíček/Pavel Dresler, driving a Citroën C2 Super 1600, unfortunately did not manage to make the finish. But Miroslav Plihal, co-driven by Stross Jirí, ended up sixth overall in the A6/A7 non-Super 1600 class. František Pilka/Richard Nesvadba drove the second highest-placed Citroën, finishing ninth in class.

SWITZERLAND
VALAIS
The 2010 Citroën Racing Trophy Switzerland is successfully launched
In order to promote the new 2010 Trophy in the country, Citroën Switzerland invited Bryan Bouffier and Thierry Neuville to take part in the Rallye du Valais. The Citroën drivers fought a thrilling duel for Group R honours through the spectacular Swiss countryside, against stiff opposition. Bryan Bouffier finally won the category after two intense days of competition, clinching a superb fifth place overall as well. Thierry Neuville finished third in Group R.

FRANCE
CARDABELLES
Gascou on top
The Cardabelles Rally, round six of the French Gravel Championship, took place around the town of Séverac-le-Château, in the Midi-Pyrenees region of southern France. Once more the C2-R2 MAXs dominated Group R. The event was characterised by a battle between Manu Gascou/Céline Chapus and Jérôme Jacquot/Max Nouvion from the very start. Gascou, from Montpellier, finally seized the upper hand and then never looked back. The Frenchman became the fifth driver to triumph in Group R with the C2-R2 MAX this season. He also claimed ninth overall. Behind him, Jérôme Jacquot managed to fend off an attack from Frantz Comoli/Annabelle Cortot. They finished second and third in Group R respectively.
Jérôme Jacquot and his co-driver sealed the two-wheel drive Coupe de France, giving the C2-R2 MAX another French Gravel Championship title.

ANTIBES
Thierry Neuville just misses a podium
In order to celebrate the successful launch of the Citroën Racing Trophy in eight different European countries, Citroën gathered together the best drivers in each series on the Antibes Rally. A total of 19 crews headed off into stages made famous by the Monte Carlo Rally. By the end of the opening day, Marc Amourette and Gwénola Marie were fifth in their Citroën C2 Super 1600. They headed Bryan Bouffier/Mathieu Baumel and Thierry Neuville/Nicolas Gilsoul, who occupied the top two places in Group R. Some overnight snow made the second day extremely difficult, catching out Bryan Bouffier and then Marc Amourette. Neuville eventually finished fourth and won Group R. He beat brothers Benjamin and Quentin Perrin, as well as Florentin Bosch/Romain Tempier.

VAUCLUSE
Venturini best of the Citroën drivers
Over the two days of the French Gravel Championship’s final round, Manu Gascou/Céline Chapus and Thierry Venturini/Hubert Rissert fought a tough battle to reach the Group R podium. Thierry Venturini finally finished fifth while Manu Gascou was ninth.

COUPE DE FRANCE FINAL
Amourette wins Group R
At the Coupe de France final held this year in Dunkirk, Marc Amourette and Gwénola Marie put in a remarkable performance. Faced with the best drivers from all the different regions in France, they put their C2-R2 MAX straight into the Group R lead from the very opening stage. The Citroën crew maintained their rapid pace and clung onto the position until the finish, which they crowned with a magnificent 10th place overall.

CEVENNES
Gascou fourth at home
The 52nd Critérium des Cévennes benefited from a heavily revised route this year but still lived up to its fearsome reputation. The Citroën crews were fast over both Friday’s dry stages and in wet conditions on Saturday. Local man Manu Gascou, navigated by Gilles de Turckheim, was the highest-placed Trophy entrant with fourth in Group R at the end. They finished ahead of Éric and Nadine Lafont, who were seventh.

VAR
Bouffier just off the podium
The final rally of the Citroën Racing Trophy season saw 10 competitors take the start. Marc Amourette and Gwénola Marie were 10th in their Citroën C2 Super 1600 until a storm hit the stages on Sunday morning, dropping them to 14th place. Having been disadvantaged by a notional time on the first special stage, Bryan Bouffier and Matthieu Baumel drove a great rally to finish just off the Group R podium in their Citroën C2-R2 MAX. Jean-Renaud Marchal and his son Michaël fulfilled their objective of finishing the rally, with ninth place in Group R. Éric and Nadine Lafont were the fourth Trophy crew home, ahead of Julien Abelli and Isabelle Galmiche. The former circuit racer continued his learning programme and could have finished higher had he not picked up a puncture.

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