Saturday, 04 May 2024 16:08

Yoann Bonato strengthens his lead in the 48th Rally Islas Canarias


The winner of last year’s edition, accompanied by Benjamin Boulloud, maintains his position at the top of the race valid for the FIA European Rally Championship (ERC). Behind the wheel of his Citroën C3 Rally2, he keeps his fellow countryman Mathieu Fraceschi at bay. The Skoda Fabia RS Rally2 driver, with Andy Malfoy on the notes, prioritizes securing points for the continental championship.


Yoann Bonato strengthens his leadership in the 48th Rally Islas Canarias. The French driver, accompanied by Benjamin Boulloud, returns from the morning section of Saturday’s leg with a lead that approaches seven seconds. His rivals in the fight for the victory, Mathieu Franceschi and Andy Malfoy, are prioritizing points for the FIA European Rally Championship and (ERC), especially aiming to finish ahead of Hayden Paddon and John Kennard.

The action on this final day of competition is focused on the northern half of the island of Gran Canaria and the special stages of ‘Arucas’, ‘Moya-Valleseco’ and ‘San Mateo-Valsequillo’. Bonato-Boulloud and Franceschi-Andolfy, who started the day separated by just three-tenths of a second, were obliged to make no mistakes. After completing the first passes through these stages, the two French teams remain at the top of the leaderboard, but with the balance temporarily tilted towards the winner of the 2023 edition.

Behing them, the battle for the final podium spot grows in intensity. New Zealanders Paddon and Kennard, current ERC champions, remain in third place with their Hyundai i20 N Rally2, but feel the pressure from faster Spanish teams. Diego Ruiloba and Ángel Luis Vela, with a Citroën C3 Rally2, hold the fourth position in the general classification. The Asturians seek a place in the honour roll, a goal also shared by José Antonio Suárez and Alberto Iglesias, placed fifth with their Skoda Fabia RS Rally2.

Alejandro Cachón and Borja Rozada continue their climb aboard a Toyota GR Yaris Rally2, now occupying a sixth place. Just behind them are the Irish Jon Armstrong and Eoin Treacy with their Ford Fiesta Rally2. The European top ten is rounded out by Mads Ostberg-Patrik Barth (Citroën C3 Rally2), Yeray Lemes-Rogelio Peñate (Citroën C3 Rally2) and Efrén Llarena-Sara Fernández (Skoda Fabia RS Rally2), in that order.

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