Pirelli Competizioni in action at Russia's first great rally

The race to be held on Friday and Saturday between Saint Petersburg and Vyborg will see the PZero in action on Travaglia's Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX Group N and Solà and Betti's Honda Civic Type-R. The last important race in that area dates back to 1914?

Vyborg (RU), 12th July 2007- An international motor sport event has not taken place on Russian soil since the almost forgotten times of the St Petersburg Grand Prix that was last run on 31st May 1914 with victory going to the German Willy Schoel, driving a Benz.

This will finally be remedied now with St Petersburg hosting the start of Rally Russia, the fourth round of the Intercontinental Rally Challenge that will see Pirelli Competizioni supporting the challenge of the European champion Renato Travaglia in a Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX Group N and the official Honda Civic Type-Rs driven by Dani Solà and Luca Betti.

After leaving St Petersburg, the rally stages will be based in the Vyborg region, about 140 Km to the north on the Finnish border. Like the famous Thousand Lakes Rally, the scene of legendary victories for Pirelli, the Russian race will be held on extremely fast unsurfaced roads with lots of jumps.

Spaniard Dani Solà, former World Junior Champion now driving a Honda Civic Type-R with Pirelli PZero tyres in the Intercontinental Rally Challenge, commented "one of the most interesting aspects of this rally is certainly the fact that it is unknown territory for everyone - this enables us to assess the precise level of competitiveness of our vehicle that is extremely promising".

Pirelli Competizioni will also be supporting several private drivers over the two legs comprising eleven special stages and 151 competitive kilometres. The rally gets underway from Isaakievskaya Square in the centre of St Petersburg and this will also be the venue for the finish on Saturday 14th July.