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Pontus Tidemand / Jonas Andersson emerged triumphant from a dramatic duel to win the Rally Mexico in the WRC2 category and continue ŠKODA’s winning run in the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC). At the end of the 295 kilometres of special stage, the new world championship leader finished 42.7 seconds clear of rivals Eric Camilli / Benjamin Veillas.

Starting last season, 13 of the last 14 rounds of the world championship have now been won by drivers in a ŠKODA FABIA R5.

 

Pontus Tidemand / Jonas Andersson, ŠKODA FABIA R5, ŠKODA Motorsport. Rally Guanajuato Mexico 2017

26-year-old ŠKODA works driver Pontus Tidemand put on a great show for the Mexican rally fans. Over the course of the four days, he was embroiled in a thrilling battle for the win with Eric Camilli, with the lead changing hands on several occasions. After Tidemand had ended the opening two days at the top of the standings, Camilli briefly took the lead on Saturday. However, ŠKODA works driver, who had taken his foot off the gas a little on the tough gravel roads, bounced back in style. Three stage wins in a row in the Autódromo de León and on the roads around the service park in the city of León were enough to see him regain top spot in WRC2.

Tidemand took a slender lead of 2.0 seconds into the final two stages, and pulled out all the stops. The Swede was 22.5 seconds quicker than Camilli on the 32.96-kilometre La Calera, clocking an outstanding time to all but wrap up the win. Tidemand followed this up with another fastest time to bring home the win in style on the closing Power Stage, which was broadcast live on TV.

 

Benito Guerra jr. / Borja Rozada, ŠKODA FABIA R5, Motorsport Italia. Rally Guanajuato Mexico 2017

Victory in Mexico sees Tidemand succeed Finland’s Teemu Suninen, who won last year – also at the wheel of a ŠKODA FABIA R5. Local hero Benito Guerra rounded off an outstanding result for ŠKODA in Mexico with third place in his FABIA R5.

This was Tidemand’s second victory in a row, having previously won his home rally in Sweden. He now stands alone at the top of the WRC2 standings. With a perfect score of 50 points from two starts, he leads Camilli (42) and Andreas Mikkelsen (25). The Norwegian won the opening round of 2017 WRC2 season, the iconic Rallye Monte Carlo, in a ŠKODA FABIA R5. As such, reigning WRC2 champions ŠKODA Motorsport have won the first three world championship rallies of the year.

2017 Rally Guanajuato Mexico – WRC2 final results:
1. Tidemand / Andersson (S/S) ŠKODA FABIA R5 3:32:56.5 hrs
2. Camilli / Veillas (F/F) Ford Fiesta R5 + 42.7 sec
3. Guerra / Rozada (MEX/E) ŠKODA FABIA R5 + 7:46.1 min

The number for the Rally Mexico: 11:6

The dramatic duel for the lead in the WRC 2 class at the Rally Mexico was reflected in the battle for individual stage wins. Here too, ŠKODA driver Pontus Tidemand in his FABIA R5 came out on top 11:6 in the head-to-head with Eric Camilli. Two special stages originally scheduled for Friday had to be cancelled, as a traffic jam caused the rally cars to be late leaving the capital Mexico City on their way back to the service park in León.

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