INTERNATIONAL WRAP: WRC ITALY & AUSSIES OVERSEAS
WRC – RALLY ITALIA – ROUND 7
Ott Tanak has won his first WRC event over the weekend, claiming victory in Rally Italy.
The M-Sport Ford driver is now the fifth different winner during the first seven rounds of the 2017 WRC season in what has been a unpredictable season since the introduction of the new cars.
Kiwi driver, Hayden Paddon, lead opening two days of the rally. However a slight mistake, clipping a dirt bank, ripped out his right rear wheel and dropped the Hyundai driver out of contention at the end of the second day. This moment handed the lead of the rally to Tanak.
Paddon would later describe the incident as a “rookie mistake”.
The Estonia started the final day with a 24 second margin over Toyota’s Jari-Matti Latvala and managed his pace throughout the final stages to finish with 12 second ahead of Latvala. Hyundai’s Thierry Neuville finished third, 55 seconds of the pace.
Day one of the rally was marked by the spectacular crashes of Citroen’s Kris Meeke and D-Mack Ford’s Elfyn Evans. Meeke has since been asked to sit out of the next rally in Poland to make room for Andreas Mikkelsen (the former VW driver) who made his WRC return with Citroen in Italy, finishing eighth in the process.
Sebastian Ogier maintains his lead in the 2017 WRC championship. Third place and a Power Stage win for Thierry Neuville did close the points gap to the multiple champion. Ott Tanak’s win moved him into third place in the standings.
MOTOGP – SPANISH GP – ROUND 7
Andrea Dovizioso has won his second MotoGP race in a week, taking out the Spanish GP overnight.
After starting from the seventh, Dovizioso moved through the field to take the lead of the race off Honda’s Dani Pedrosa on lap 17. A lap later Pedrosa’s team mate Marc Marquez would make the same move to finish the second. Pedrosa held on to finish third.
It’s the first time that Ducati has scored back to back wins in MotoGP since Aussie Casey Stoner achieved the feat back in 2010.
Jorge Lorenzo got the best of an action packed start to hold the lead early. A battle then ensued that saw both Repsol Honda riders, Marquez and Pedrosa, have a crack leading the race by lap 8 before the race settled down.
Aussie Jack Miller was running as high as tenth. However he dropped his Honda at turn 5 and didn’t finish the race.
A tenth place finish for Yamaha rider Maverick Viñales was enough for him to maintain his lead in the championship with a slender 7 point lead over Dovizioso. Marquez moved into third place 23 points of the leader.
FORMULA E – BERLIN – ROUND 7 & 8
INDYCAR – TEXAS – ROUND 9
Aussie Will Power survived a wild race at the Texas Motor Speedway to claim the win in Round 9 of the IndyCar Championship.
The race which featured several spectacular crashes during it’s 248 lap duration, ended under the control of the safety car. Only nine of the twenty two cars who started finished the race, and just six cars remained on the lead lap.
Lap 152 had the most dramatic incident when James Hinchcliffe crashed out at turn three after contact with Tony Kanaan, taking out nine other cars in the process.
Power took the win from Kanaan who recovered from the incident on lap 152 to finish second. Simon Pagenaud, Graham Rahal and Gabby Chaves rounded out the remainder of the top 5.
Kiwi Scott Dixon retained this championship lead by finishing ninth after contact with Takuma Sato that caused the race to finish under safety car. Dixon sits on 326 points ahead of Pagenaud on 313 and Sato on 312. Power moved up to fifth on 286 after his win.
NASCAR – POCONO – ROUND 14
Ryan Blaney held off a hard fought challenge from 2014 series champion Kevin Harvick to claim his first NASCAR Cup Series victory of his career.
Blaney grabbed the lead from pole sitter Kyle Busch on after the restart on Lap 148 who would drop back to fourth in the final stages struggling on older tyres.
“I think it exceeds the dream a little bit,” Blaney said after the race.
“I grew up watching my dad (Dave Blaney) race on this race track, and it’s so cool to get the Wood Brothers in Victory Lane, No. 1, and to do it here at a race track that is really close to Ohio — a home to me — is pretty awesome.”
CARRERA CUP GERMANY
Matt Campbell scored his first win in Europe, taking out the opening German Porsche Carrera Cup race at Red Bull Ring in Austria. He backed that with a third-place finish in the second race. We’ve got more details here.
After starting the Moto2 race in Spain in 26th. A steady and consistent race for Remy Gardner saw him move up to 20th by the chequered flag.
BRITISH FORMULA 4
Oscar Piastri earned himself three podium finishes from three starts during the British Formula 4 races at Croft over the weekend.
The young Aussie qualified second and maintained that position in the opening race. The second race, a reverse top top six, was a little harder. However Piastri battled his way back up to second in that race a well.
The third race ways also a challenge, after dropping to fourth, managed to sneak onto the final spot of the podium after a battle with championship leader Jamie Caroline.
For a more detailed analysis of the weekends international motorsport, pick up the next issue of Auto Action Magazine, on sale Thursday. In the mean time make sure you follow Auto Action on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for all the latest updates.
Date posted: June 12, 2017