DMACK Pushes For Top Pace In Portugal

DMACK Pushes For Top Pace In Portugal

• Same soft compound tyres nominated as Rally Argentina.
• Renewed confidence after stunning gravel performance.
• First DDFT prize drive event for Max Vatanen.
• Three WRC cars to run on DMACK tyres.

DMACK is hoping to continue the impressive gravel performance which saw it come within 0.7 seconds of a maiden FIA World Rally Championship victory, when the team tackles Vodafone Rally de Portugal next week.

DMACK’s leading crew, Brits Elfyn Evans and Dan Barritt, were blisteringly fast last time out at Rally Argentina – setting the highest number of fastest stage times on an event this year and coming within a whisker of a debut WRC win.

They led for all but two stages, surprised many with their pace and proved that the partnership will be a competitive force this season.

Some of the roads in Portugal next week are expected to have similar soft surfaces to Argentina, but the stages are slower, more technical and littered with rocks at the side of the road. Second pass becomes badly rutted and cars pull out even more rocks which can damage both wheels and tyres.

DMACK has again nominated the soft compound GS62 version of its DMG+2 gravel tyre as the main choice for the Porto-based event. WRC crews will have a maximum of 28 over the weekend while WRC 2 drivers will have access to 26 DMG+22 tyres, designed specifically for R5 cars.

As one of the original rounds of the inaugural WRC in 1973, Rally Portugal is steeped in history and attracts huge numbers of spectators. The route runs to the north of the service park in Matosinhos and the iconic Fafe test on Sunday, with its famous jump, is set to attract tens of thousands of fans.

In addition to Evans, who is piloting a 2017-spec Ford Fiesta WRC, DMACK will also supply two other WRC entries – Martin Prokop in a Fiesta and Jean-Michel Raoux with a Citroen DS3.

The Drive DMACK team also makes its debut in WRC 2. Max Vatanen and JJ Renucci compete in the first of two prize drive rallies, awarded from last season’s Drive DMACK Fiesta Trophy.

Dick Cormack, DMACK managing director, said: “Portugal is a tough rally and always throws up some challenging conditions. We proved in Argentina that our gravel products are very competitive and we will be aiming to replicate that performance. However, the stages are technical and second pass can become pretty rough and rutted.”

Elfyn Evans, DMACK WRC driver, said: “The overall package worked really well in Argentina and the plan in Portugal is just to push as hard as we can again and put in the best performance possible. We had a positive run in Argentina but that hasn’t changed anything – we go to Portugal to do our best and aim as high as possible.”

Max Vatanen, DMACK WRC 2 driver, said: “I’m really looking forward to stepping up to the R5 car. It’s my first-ever race in WRC 2 and we are here to learn but also do our best. I have good experience of the Portuguese roads from the Drive DMACK Fiesta Trophy and they really suit my driving style so I’m aiming to make the most of that.”

Tyre Information:List 1 for R5 and WRC 2
DMACK Grippa 205/65R15 DMG+22
First choice: GS62 soft compound
Second choice: GH23 hard compound
Maximum allowed: 26

Tyre Information: List 2 for WRC
DMACK Grippa 215/65R15 DMG+2
First choice: GS62 soft compound
Second choice: GH23 hard compound
Maximum allowed: 28

Event Information
Based: Matosinhos, Porto
Start: Guimaraes, 18.10 on Thursday 18 May
Finish: Matosinhos, 14.20 on Sunday 21 May
Stages: 19 stages, 349.17km
Longest stage: S12/15 Amarante, 37.55km

2017-05-12

DMACK Pushes For Top Pace In Portugal
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