Three rallies with three very different weather and course conditions showcased the versatility and competitiveness of the Abarth 124 rally, that took two wins and a second place in the R-GT category.
On the snow of the first leg of the Rally Brasov in Romania, the Abarth 124 rally of the Bernini Rally team, driven by Florin Tincescu and Alina Pop, took the ninth place in the overall ranking. This was the first race for this crew in a spider with the Scorpion badge. The Abarth 124 rally demonstrated its potentials, scoring an excellent result, particularly on the trickiest parts of the course, as already seen in the Monte Carlo Rally. “We went for the set-up successfully experimented by Nucita in Monte Carlo and it was very effective”, explained Florin Tincescu. “I am very pleased of this first race with the Abarth 124 rally which generated a great deal of interest and support in Romania. Rally racing is very popular here”.
The weather was good at the Rally Il Ciocco in Italy. Although dry, the presence of gravel on the tarmac made the tortuous and technical course very treacherous. Young driver Cristopher Lucchesi, with crew mate Marco Pollicino, opted for a prudent approach which led him to win the R-GT category. Andrea Modanesi, with Marco Menchini, instead swerved off the road in the second-to-last trial.
“The Il Ciocco rally was an important result for the Challenge, said Lucchesi. It was no easy feat because the tarmac was very dirty and making a mistake was not difficult”.
The Valasska Rally, the opening event of the Czech Republic national championship, took place at the same time. The Abarth 124 rally of the Agrotec Czech Abarth Team, driven by Martin Rada and Jaroslav Jugas, ending second in the R-GT category. The Czech driver’s race was a crescendo as he gained confidence with the car and improved his performance more and more. “The car has great potential. Particularly at the beginning I found it difficult to adapt to its outstanding power and handling”, Martin Rada said. “Towards the end, I improved by results without taking too many risks”.
The next appointment of the Abarth 124 rally International Challenge will be the prestigious Rally Tour de Corse, the French stage of the Rally World Championship and second event of the FIA R-GT Cup on April 6 to 8. No fewer than four Abarth 124 rally crews have signed up, including Frenchmen Raphael Astier and Philippe Gache and the Italians Andrea Modanesi and Andrea Nucita, the latter after having made a name for himself in the Monte Carlo Rally this year.