In the European and Italian race, the driver from Varese is in the lead ahead of Basso and the Frenchman Bonato. A puncture sets Lukyanuk back from the top positions, while Paddon lost valuable seconds in SS6. The CRZ race was exciting with Di Iuorio taking the victory ahead of D’Alto and Bucciarelli. De Antoni wins in the Clio Trophy. Tomorrow is the final stage.
29.07.2023 - Today was a super intense day at the Rally di Roma Capitale. The race, organized by Max Rendina, is the sixth round of the FIA European Rally Championship and the fifth round of the Sparco Italian Rally Championship. It witnessed the first competitive stage after yesterday's spectacular and emotional prologue at the Colosseum.
On the six special stages held this Saturday, July 29th, including the double pass on the "Rocca di Cave-Subiaco," the longest stage of the championship with over 32 kilometres, significant dynamics of this challenge have already been written. Andrea Crugnola and Pietro Elia Ometto are leading with a 20.2s margin at the end of the stage, where they showed outstanding performance with the Citroen C3 Rally2. The driver from Varese surpassed all his opponents at the mid-race flying finish, accumulating a considerable advantage.
Giandomenico Basso and Lorenzo Granai with the Skoda Fabia RS Rally2 are currently in second place after climbing from the third step of the podium. The competition is wide open because Yohann Bonato and Benjamin Boulloud with the Citroen C3 Rally2 are only 23.7s behind, very close to Basso and ready to attack.
The battle for the fourth place is fierce. Mares-Bucha (Skoda Fabia Rally2 Evo) are just below the podium, trailing by 54.4s. Close behind them, only 1.3s adrift, is Simone Campedelli with Tania Canton (Skoda Fabia Rally2 Evo). Paddon-Kennard (Hyundai i20 N Rally2) are in sixth place after the setback in SS6, just 0.4s behind Campedelli, while Mabellini is in seventh place, 0.5s behind Paddon. The story is still wide open.
The fate of the Rally di Roma Capitale will be decided on Sunday, July 30th, with two laps on three different timed sections. The short "Fiuggi" stage (6.72 km - SS8 at 7:51 and SS13 at 17:05) will open and close the final session as the Power Stage for the European Championship, followed by "Alatri" (6.96 km - SS9 at 8:51 and SS11 at 13:01) and the other traditional stage "Santopadre" (29.08 km - SS10 at 10:16 and SS12 at 14:26). Fiuggi will again serve as the central reference point for the hot phase, where the Service Park and Headquarters are set up, and will host the final awards ceremony on Corso Nuova Italia, starting from 18:00. In addition to the full live coverage on FIA ERC All Live, both stages in Fiuggi will be broadcast on RAI Sport on channel 58 of Digital Terrestrial Television.
In the CRZ race, the challenge remained uncertain until the end, described as a chess game by the drivers at the finish line. Today, the CRZ race concluded with the victory of Riccardo Di Iuorio and Doriano Maini with the Skoda Fabia R5. Their success was achieved after a continuous battle with other four-wheel-drive cars, a contest that saw an excellent Liburdi losing his lead when he suffered a double puncture on the "Guarcino-Altipiani di Arcinazzo" during the second pass. Di Iuorio managed to hold on to the top spot, finishing ahead of Gianluca D’Alto-Mirko Liburdi (Skoda Fabia Rally2 Evo), Antonio Bucciarelli and Vincenzo Roma (Skoda Fabia R5). Noteworthy was the fourth overall and first in RC4 for Simone Taglienti and Graziano Sigismondi with the Peugeot 208 Rally4.
This first stage also served as the first round of the Clio Trophy, which began with the Rally di Roma Capitale. Despite some setbacks that could have deprived them of victory in the morning, the deserving winners were Edoardo De Antoni and Carlotta Romano, ahead of Andrea Gonella-Elena Badinelli and the third-placed Michele Campagna and Fabrizio Mallozzi, all driving Renault Clio Rally5.