Pirelli celebrates the end of an incredible rally season at home in Monza
Following an incredible season of rallying, in which Pirelli claimed all the titles in the European Rally Championship, a record 10th title with Paolo Andreucci and Peugeot Italia in Italy, and announced its return to the World Rally Championship in 2018, the Italian firm now celebrates the sport at the traditional season-closing Monza Rally: starting tomorrow and ending on Sunday.
The top stars of the show: One of the biggest attractions will again be the VR46 team with its star driver in a Ford Fiesta RS WRC, who is a five-time winner of the event and the defending champion. Also from the world of bikes will be Tony Cairoli, a nine-time Motocross champion who has clinched his biggest successes with Pirelli. In total, between 100 and 120 cars are expected to use Pirelli tyres at the Monza Rally: an end of season rallying festival that uses a variety of different asphalt stages laid out at the famous home of the Italian Grand Prix. Previous winners of the Monza Rally with Pirelli have also included F1 star Robert Kubica and WRC factory driver Dani Sordo, as well as three-time Le Mans winner Dindo Capello.
The route: The action this weekend takes place over nine competitive stages, which include some runs over the legendary Monza banking that was used up until 1969, as well as stages run on Monza’s access roads in addition to the circuit itself. In total, there are 168.650 competitive kilometres, with the historic section – where Pirelli will also be strongly represented – covering 74.100 kilometres.
The timetable: The rally starts on Friday afternoon (December 1) and concludes on Sunday lunchtime. There will be full coverage of the event on all of Pirelli’s social media channels, including live updates from the service park in the Monza paddock.
The competitors: Several top stars are again making the pilgrimage to Monza, including Hyundai’s WRC stars Thierry Neuville and Andreas Mikkelsen, who will unusually be sharing a Hyundai i20 WRC and taking it in turns to drive and co-drive. Another WRC star will be Craig Breen, sharing a Citroen DS3 WRC with Tamara Molinaro. Italian stars Paolo Andreucci, Alessandro Perico, former Audi Le Mans driver Marco Bonanomi, and former WTCC driver Stefano d’Aste will also compete. Pirelli tyres will be seen on a huge variety of makes and models: including Citroen, Ford, Hyundai, Mitsubishi, Peugeot, Renault and Skoda – as well as BMW, Fiat, Ford, Lancia, Porsche and Subaru in the historic section.
The tyres: Pirelli will bring a range of asphalt rally tyres to Monza, including the latest P Zero RK tyres that won the European Rally Championship for the third consecutive time this year. In addition, the P7 Corsa Classic will be used for the historic cars. Wet RW tyres are also available, with the weather expected to be generally cold, plus a mix of dry and humid conditions.
Quotes: Pirelli’s rally activity manager Terenzio Testoni said: “The Monza Rally is a regular fixture on our calendar, which allows us to showcase our entire range of asphalt rally products, driven by some of the very top stars in both two-wheeled and four-wheeled motorsport. There’s the usual big entry list, and the vast majority of drivers have chosen Pirelli tyres, so we hope to continue our winning record at this emblematic event, as we prepare for our return to the World Rally Championship next year.”
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