Tag Archives: Monte Carlo Rally



The 2017 Rallye Monte-Carlo officially got underway on Thursday evening, with a leg taking competitors from Monaco to Gap. During the evening’s only fully completed stage, Kris Meeke set the fourth fastest time, whilst Stéphane Lefebvre was forced to stop with a mechanical issue.

– After setting off from Monaco’s Place du Casino, the crews were to contest two stages on their way to Gap.

– However, SS1 was cancelled after one of the competitors rolled their car midway through the stage. Unfortunately, a spectator was hit in the incident and later died despite the intervention of the emergency services. SS2 went ahead as normal, albeit slightly behind schedule.

– Between Bayons and Bréziers, Kris Meeke and Paul Nagle set the fourth fastest time in their Citroën C3 WRC. In line with the instructions given by the team, the British-Irish crew did not take any risks at the start of the rally.

– Meanwhile, Stéphane Lefebvre and Gabin Moreau were forced to stop on this stage due to a transmission problem. As soon as the car is back to the service park, the team will get to work to ensure they are able to return to action under Rally2 rules.

– Craig Breen and Scott Martin made a promising start to their race, recording their seventh fastest time, ahead of two new-generation World Rally Cars.

– Tomorrow, the rally continues with two loops of three stages, covering a total timed distance of 160.8km. The cars are expected to arrive back at the Gap service park from 5.04pm onwards.

Formula 1

Nico Rosberg Monaco 2013


Nico Rosberg topped both practice sessions in Monaco today with Lewis Hamilton second fastest this afternoon. 

• Nico´s fastest time in the afternoon session was one second quicker than the fastest lap in P2 last year –

• The drivers completed a total of 154 laps today, equivalent to almost two race distances –

• The focus of the sessions was on basic set-up work, circuit familiarisation and tyre evaluations –

• During P2, Nico and Lewis both completed runs of over 20 laps on the super soft compound –

Nico Rosberg 
A very productive day for us. We completed a lot of laps and I feel comfortable in the car. It seems that we are quick again on one lap but we have been working hard again to make improvements to our race pace. It will be interesting to see where we are compared to the others over the weekend as it´s not really representative today. It feels great to be back here driving around the streets of my home city here again and I´m very much looking forward to the weekend. 

Lewis Hamilton 
It´s been a positive start for us today and I´m pleased with what we have achieved here in Monaco. We did some good long run work this afternoon and the supersoft tyres seem to be performing well. I need to improve my one lap pace however, partly with the balance of the car and partly from me. The car is almost there and the pace looks good so we´ll look at the data tonight and work on those areas which can still be improved before the weekend. 

Ross Brawn 
Today was a pretty good day for us and it´s always nice to come through the first day of the Monaco weekend cleanly. The true test will come on Sunday but I´m pleased with the technical work that we covered in the two practice sessions today. Both Nico and Lewis, along with our engineers, did a very good job working together through the programme. A pleasing start to the weekend and now we have to make the right decisions for Saturday and Sunday 

Toto Wolff 
It was a good solid first day for us: lots of laps, no incidents and good lap times. Nico and Lewis both looked quick and comfortable and we seemed able to keep the tyres in good condition on our long runs this afternoon. Our rivals will be very strong on both Saturday and Sunday, so we will get our heads down and keep working to build on this good start.

“I think traditionally we’re never too electric here on Thursday’s, so today was actually one of the better ones we’ve had in the last few years. You’ve got to be very, very focused here; concentration is very, very high. It’s a challenging venue to pull everything together; we want to obviously get short run performance as well as gaining short and long run data, which I think we’ve got. There are some quick cars out there; we’ve seen that on Saturday at the last few GPs. All in all, a reasonably smooth day for us, we’ve got plenty to go through now.”
“I think generally it was okay. Unfortunately we lost quite a lot of time in the afternoon while we were making some changes, but that can happen on Friday, or in this case Thursday. We’d like to be a little bit more competitive, so we need to try and find some more lap time. We had a KERS issue this afternoon, so I didn’t use the system during P2. The guys know what the problem was with that.”
Pos Driver                Team                   Time       Gap     Laps
 1. Nico Rosberg          Mercedes               1m14.759s            45
 2. Lewis Hamilton        Mercedes               1m15.077s  + 0.318s  50
 3. Fernando Alonso       Ferrari                1m15.196s  + 0.437s  37
 4. Felipe Massa          Ferrari                1m15.278s  + 0.519s  38
 5. Mark Webber           Red Bull-Renault       1m15.404s  + 0.645s  41
 6. Kimi Raikkonen        Lotus-Renault          1m15.511s  + 0.752s  38
 7. Romain Grosjean       Lotus-Renault          1m15.718s  + 0.959s  10
 8. Jenson Button         McLaren-Mercedes       1m15.959s  + 1.200s  39
 9. Sebastian Vettel      Red Bull-Renault       1m16.014s  + 1.255s  32
10. Paul di Resta         Force India-Mercedes   1m16.046s  + 1.287s  42
11. Adrian Sutil          Force India-Mercedes   1m16.349s  + 1.590s  43
12. Sergio Perez          McLaren-Mercedes       1m16.434s  + 1.675s  40
13. Nico Hulkenberg       Sauber-Ferrari         1m16.823s  + 2.064s  42
14. Pastor Maldonado      Williams-Renault       1m16.857s  + 2.098s  40
15. Esteban Gutierrez     Sauber-Ferrari         1m16.935s  + 2.176s  44
16. Daniel Ricciardo      Toro Rosso-Ferrari     1m17.145s  + 2.386s  37
17. Jean-Eric Vergne      Toro Rosso-Ferrari     1m17.184s  + 2.425s  42
18. Valtteri Bottas       Williams-Renault       1m17.264s  + 2.505s  46
19. Jules Bianchi         Marussia-Cosworth      1m17.892s  + 3.133s  40
20. Charles Pic           Caterham-Renault       1m18.212s  + 3.453s  43
21. Max Chilton           Marussia-Cosworth      1m18.784s  + 4.025s  40
22. Giedo van der Garde   Caterham-Renault       1m19.031s  + 4.272s  30


Sam Bird Monaco 2013

Sam Bird sets the pace in Monte Carlo
British driver leads RUSSIAN TIME 1-2 in Round 4 free practice
Sam Bird set the tone in this morning’s free practice in the streets of Monaco: the Brit’ from RUSSIAN TIME clocked a laptime of 1:21.512 in a trouble free session, five hundredths quicker than teammate Tom Dillmann. Rookie Mitch Evans finished third.
Under clear blue skies, the pitlane opened and the twenty-six cars fed onto the track on Soft Pirelli tyres. Evans set the early pace, but it was Bird who was on a mission and topped the timing sheets in the first ten minutes of the session with a laptime of 1:23.402. Marcus Ericsson improved the Brit’s time by four tenths, but Dillmann put his head down and found the extra pace to break under the 1m23s barrier and bettered the DAMS’ man’s time by six tenths. Evans and Felipe Nasr also went under 1m23s, with Fabio Leimer moving up to second, one tenth slower than Dillmann.
Halfway through the session, Bird edged his teammate out of the top spot by four hundredths. Dillmann was then on a flyer and looked set to improve again, but Stéphane Richelmi spun and stopped at Rascasse ruining the Frenchman’s efforts, Dillmann having to settle for P2 ahead of Leimer.
With today’s qualifying session being divided into two groups of fifteen minutes each, most of the teams chose to switch to Super Soft tyres for the second part of the free practice in order to evaluate the level of grip with the option tyres. The laptimes improved again and Bird, Dillmann and Evans dipped under 1m22s. At the chequered flag, Bird remained top ahead of his teammate and the Arden driver. Last year’s sprint race winner Jolyon Palmer finished fourth ahead of Ericsson, Johnny Cecotto, Leimer, Nasr, Rio Haryanto and James Calado, the latter who in an effort to find his car’s limits concluded his session going off track at Ste Devote in the dying minutes.
The Qualifying session will start at 16:15 local time with Group A gathering all odd numbered cars (including Bird, Ericsson, Nasr, Haryanto and Calado). After a ten minute break, Group B with all even numbered cars will start their session at 16:40 local time.
Monte Carlo – Free Practice
Sam Bird
Tom Dillmann
Mitch Evans
Arden International
Jolyon Palmer
Marcus Ericsson
Johnny Cecotto
Arden International
Fabio Leimer
Racing Engineering
Felipe Nasr
Rio Haryanto
Barwa Addax Team
James Calado
ART Grand Prix
Julian Leal
Racing Engineering
Kevin Ceccon
Trident Racing
Alexander Rossi
EQ8 Caterham Racing
Jake Rosenzweig
Barwa Addax Team
Nathanaël Berthon
Trident Racing
Sergio Canamasas
EQ8 Caterham Racing
Stefano Coletti
Simon Trummer
Stéphane Richelmi
Robin Frijns
Hilmer Motorsport
Daniel Abt
ART Grand Prix
Rene Binder
Venezuela GP Lazarus
Daniel De Jong
MP Motorsport
Jon Lancaster
Hilmer Motorsport
Kevin Giovesi
Venezuela GP Lazarus
Adrian Quaife-Hobbs
MP Motorsport


Citroen DS3 WRC


Sheikh Khalid sees new era for UAE capital in world rallying as Loeb aims to seal another Monte Carlo triumph

Abu Dhabi, UAE, 15 January, 2013: Abu Dhabi’s three-year partnership with eight-time World Rally Championship (WRC) manufacturers winners, Citroën Racing, begins in earnest this week as French ace Sebastien Loeb launches his bid for a seventh victory in the legendary Monte Carlo Rally, the opening round of the 13-event season.

Loeb’s participation marks the start of a momentous first season for the recently-established Abu Dhabi Racing (ADR), which has created the UAE capital’s new partnership with Citroen on the WRC stage as part of a concentrated programme designed to reinforce the emirate’s global motorsport stature.

The UAE’s Sheikh Khalid Al Qassimi is central to the initiative, both as ADR Chairman and as the main driver in Abu Dhabi Citroën Total World Rally Team. In addition to running a nine-event WRC campaign, Al Qassimi will also spearhead a five-car assault on the FIA Middle East Rally Championship which starts later this month in Qatar.

While Al Qassimi must wait for February’s Rally Sweden to make his long-awaited WRC return, Loeb and co-driver Daniel Elena, backed by flying Finn Mikko Hirvonen and Jarmo Lehtinen, will pilot Citroën Total Abu Dhabi World Rally Team’s debut through the treacherous snow and ice-coated roads of Monte Carlo’s winter.

With Hirvonen contesting all 13 nominated championship events, the Monte Carlo Rally represents one of only four WRC appearances this season by Loeb, who has retired from full-time competitive rallying after winning nine consecutive WRC drivers’ titles. He will alternate in the second DS3 WRC this season with Spain’s Dani Sordo. In the season opener, Sordo and co-driver Carlos del Barrio will chase points for Abu Dhabi Citroën Total WRT – the second team created by the new ADR- Citroën Racing partnership – in another DS3 WRC.

With Al Qassimi taking the wheel of a fourth DS3 WRC in Sweden, he will be following this week’s Monte Carlo event with enormous interest and expectation.

“We see this as the start of a new era for Abu Dhabi in world rallying and I’m very excited by what lies ahead,” said Al Qassimi. “I’m very happy to be getting the chance to return to action in the WRC but the bigger picture is that this is a unique opportunity to carry the Abu Dhabi brand to a worldwide audience.

“The emirate is already well known as one of the world’s top venues for Formula 1 racing and for other events held at Yas Marina Circuit. Now we have linked up with the most successful works team in WRC history and opened up another exciting avenue for UAE motorsport and Emirati drivers.”

In the first test for the three new Abu-Dhabi-branded Citroen DS3 WRCs, the Monte Carlo Rally gets under way from Valence tomorrow with four special stages. Ice and snow are expected to play a big part, making tyre choice critical en route to the finish on Saturday. In total there are 465km of timed stages and no pair is better prepared for the challenge than Loeb and Elena, who begin their ‘testimonial’ year with one of their favourite rallies, ten years after their debut Monte Carlo win.

“They’ve had an amazing run of success and it would give us a wonderful start to the season if they could take an Abu Dhabi-branded car to victory on what looks like being their final Monte Carlo appearance,” said Sheikh Khalid.

Monte Carlo



Last year, in his first experience of the MONTE CARLO rally, he came second in the R2 category. This year, Nelson PANCIATICI will be at the start of the 81st MONTE CARLO rally which takes place from January 16 to 20. Nelson will be driving a TWINGO RS R2 Evo provided by GLIESE Engineering Motorsport in the colours of EUROFORMULA, RALF TECH watches and P1 ADVANCED RACEWEAR.

Nelson Panciatici continues his apprenticeship in this discipline and he can count on the experience of his co-driver, René PADOVANI, who has backed him from his first steps in rallying. 

If Nelson Panciatici has chosen to do it mainly for pleasure in this, his third rally, it will not stop him from taking it very seriously. “I discovered the magic of the Monte Carlo last year and the moment I finished I wanted to do it again! I know it won’t be easy and I rely a lot on my co-driver Rene Padovani. The main difficulty for a track guy on a Monte Carlo is how to “read” the road with its changing traction! Last year, he helped me a lot and I improved throughout the rally. I’ll be there primarily for pleasure but that doesn’t mean I haven’t prepared for it, I’ve carefully watched many videos from on-board cameras in the mythical specials such as the MOULINON, the BURZET, SAINT JEAN EN ROYANS or the TURINI. It was a refresher to some degree, and at  the very least I can picture their profile! I’m going to  stick to the same method as last year, which is to go up in strength as the specials roll out and stay alert to the many traps! I know for sure that the rally taught me positive things for circuit racing, especially in difficult conditions, and I have fun while improving! I want to thank all my partners and I will do my utmost to get the best result possible as well as have a great race!”

The start of the MONTE CARLO rally will be from the town of VALENCE. The many battles, whether it be for the overall result or the different categories, are sure to generate huge enthusiasm from the crowds who will be lining the roads. We can rest assured that Nelson, who is first and foremost a competitor, will not want to miss any of it!

Motorsports Mondial

Photo: bestofrallylive

Sebastien Loeb got off to a strong start in his bid for a record ninth world title by winning the season-opening Monte Carlo Rally on Sunday.

The eight-time world champion completed the 18-stage race in 4 hours, 32 minutes, 39.9 seconds. Daniel Sordo of Spain took second place, 28.6 seconds ahead of Petter Solberg of Norway.

Loeb went into the final day with a lead of 2 minutes, 41.6 seconds over Sordo and looked to secure the maximum number of points by winning the last stage.

The Citroen driver finished the power stage 1.2 seconds ahead of teammate Mikko Hirvonen of Finland to earn three bonus points and lead Mini driver Sordo by ten points in the standings.

“It’s always a great moment to start the season like this, especially in front of so many fans,” Loeb said. “Full points in the first race is incredible and for sure it’s the perfect start to my title defense. Monte-Carlo is my rally and for the others we will have to see.”

Loeb won the Monte Carlo Rally for the sixth time to clinch his 68th career victory.

The drivers next compete at the Swedish Rally in Karlstad from February 9-12.