Valentino Rossi's Pirelli-equipped Ford triumphs again at the "Monza Rally Show"
Valentino Rossi has taken his second consecutive victory at the Monza Rally, using Pirelli's latest evolution asphalt tyres. Alex Perico also put in a strong performance in a Peugeot 206 WRC-Pirelli. Cantamessa wins Group N in a Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX and Tenchini (Abarth Grande Punto) is second in the S2000 category.
Monza (I), 25th November 2007 - History has repeated itself as Valentino Rossi and Pirelli once more dominated the action at the Monza Rally Show this weekend, an end of year festival of rallying that attracts some excellent drivers and a large enthusiastic crowd.
Although Alex Perico set the early pace in his Peugeot 206 WRC-Pirelli, the PZero-equipped Ford Focus WRC driven by multiple bike world champion Rossi claimed the lead half way through the first leg. The Italian was able to control his advantage all the way to the finish in order to seal his second consecutive win at the Monza Rally. Perico, the leading Peugeot-Pirelli driver throughout the 2007 rally season, was not able to finish higher than fourth after getting blocked by a slower competitor on the longest stage of the rally.
Rossi underlined the performance of his Ford's Pirelli PZero tyres on several occasions, particularly in the driving rain that characterised this year's event. Despite the standing water on many parts of the track, the bike ace praised the amount of grip available. Rossi also thanked Pirelli technician Terenzio Testoni, whom he said was "fundamental in choosing the most appropriate tyres to the conditions throughout the rally. "
The Monza Rally Show was extremely positive for Pirelli, with not only an overall win for Rossi but third place for Mirco Virag (Peugeot 307 WRC-Pirelli) and fourth for Perico. Pirelli also claimed the hotly contested Group N category, thanks to a win for the PZero-equipped Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX of Luca Cantamessa. Giampaolo Tenchini, driving an Abarth Grande Punto on Pirelli tyres, was second in the Super 2000 class.
|Mario Isola, Pirelli's rally manager, commented: "Our consecutive wins at the Monza Rally Show should be seen in the light of the fact that we operate two separate lines of development for our rally tyres: those to be used on the WRC - of which we will be the exclusive supplier next year - and those used on non-WRC events, which are no less important to us. Thanks to our know-how and the experience we have developed from every event, we are able to supply competitive tyres to all our drivers using Pirelli PZero rubber on rallies. We have also proved our ability to hand-cut these tyres precisely, as we did for many drivers at Monza including Rossi and Cantamessa, in order to suit variables such as the car, road surface and weather conditions. "|