Six-way IRC battle set for Cyprus finale


An unprecedented six drivers will do battle for the Intercontinental
Rally Challenge crown when the series reaches its electrifying climax
on the Cyprus Rally next month (3-5 November).
Bryan Bouffier, Juho Hanninen, Jan Kopecky, Freddy Loix, Andreas
Mikkelsen and Thierry Neuville can all clinch the prestigious title on
the mixed-surface season finale.
“It’s going to be very exciting because the championship
is very open,” said defending IRC champion Hanninen.
Mikkelsen, who moved back into title contention with victory on last
week’s RACMSA Rally of Scotland added: “Our chances are
small but we will go there aiming to be among the best.”
IRC titles won in Scotland
Two significant Intercontinental Rally Challenge titles were won
during RACMSA Rally of Scotland with SKODA crowned IRC
manufacturers’ champion for a second consecutive season and
Honda clinching the IRC 2WD Cup manufacturers’ title spoils for
the first time.
SKODA’s success came after Andreas Mikkelsen led home Juho
Hanninen in a one-two for the Czech make. Honda’s triumph
resulted from Martin Kangur’s maiden success in the IRC 2WD Cup
and a strong third place for Janos Puskadi.
While the manufacturers’ titles for 2011 have been decided
subject to official confirmation, the overall IRC drivers’
title, the IRC 2WD Cup drivers’ champion and the winner of the
inaugural IRC Production Cup crown will be decided on the final round
in Cyprus from 3-5 November.
Rally of Scotland stages praised
Scotland hosted its third Intercontinental Rally Challenge event last
week with leading crews praising the exciting and demanding nature of
the stages despite the onset of wet and muddy conditions.
Based in the counties of Perthshire and Stirlingshire, the event
utilised stages mainly on closed forest roads, four of which were
shown live on Eurosport and Eurosport Player.
Winner Andreas Mikkelsen said: “The stages were difficult but I
really enjoyed sliding around in the muddy conditions.”
“It’s still one of my favourites,” added SKODA
driver Juho Hanninen. “I like the stages because they are fast
and flowing over the crests and still in these difficult conditions
it’s better.”
Colin McRae Vision makes vital donation
Colin McRae Vision, established to help improve the health and
education of children around the world, used the ceremonial start of
RACMSA Rally of Scotland last Friday (7 October) to present a cheque
to Children’s Hospice Association Scotland.
The donation of £5700 (about 6645 Euros) will be used to
install a specialist bed at the CHAS-managed Robin House centre in
Stirlingshire close to the route of Scotland’s IRC round. Jimmy
McRae, Colin’s father, presented the cheque to Hannah Archibald
of CHAS.
Colin McRae Vision is an official partner of the Intercontinental
Rally Challenge. Visit for more information.
IRC crew celebrate half century
SKODA Auto Deutschland crew Matthias Kahle and Peter Gobel marked 50
events together when they finished 10th overall on RACMSA Rally of
Scotland last week.
In addition to celebrating their first IRC drivers’
championship point, Kahle and Gobel have made it 50 rallies competing
alongside each other with the Czech manufacturer.
Kahle, who was suffering from ‘flu during the rally, said:
“It’s not an easy place to come for the first time but I
enjoyed the stages even though the conditions were not easy. But we
achieved our goal by finishing in the points on our 50th rally
together with SKODA.”
Golden Stage Rally excitement builds
Preparations for the second running of the Cyprus In Your Heart
Golden Stage Rally on 6 November continue apace with confirmation that
the overall winner stands to receive 40,000 Euros in prize money.
The event, which takes place over a single mixed surface stage, the
Golden Stage, run twice and shown live on television around the world,
carries a total prize fund of 150,000 Euros, which will be shared
between the top five overall finishers and the leading drivers in each
of the three categories based on car performance.
Visit for regular updates and all the latest
event news.

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