Ari Vatanen of Finland consolidated a five minute lead over fellow Finn Hannu Mikkola as the seventy remaining cars in the RAC Lombard Rally headed for Wales on November 28.
1. GVs Peugeot car No. 2 driven by Ari Vatanen, going round bend 0.06
2. GV Audi car No. 3, driven by Hannu Mikkola, accelerating out of bend 0.13
3. GV Vatanen driving past spectators 0.23
4. GV Mikkola sliding into bend 0.27
5. GV Mikkola continuing stage 0.32
6. GV Mikkola driving past 0.38
7. GV Audi car No. 6, driven by Michele Mouton, driving past spectators 0.45
8. GV Vatanen driving past 0.56
9. GV Mikkola going through gate 1.01
10. GV Mouton sliding into tyre barrier, reversing, and driving off again 1.17
11. GV Vatanen breaking hard into corner 1.26
12. GV Mikkola going round same bend 1.32
13. GV Car No. 4, driven by Jimmy McRae, cutting across corner 1.38
14. GVs Vatanen going through gate, followed closely by Mikkola (2 shots) 2.00
SPORT: MOTOR RALLYINGNOTE TO EDITORS: THIS STORY INCLUDES HANDOUT MATERIAL.
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Background: WALES, U.K.
Ari Vatanen of Finland consolidated a five minute lead over fellow Finn Hannu Mikkola as the seventy remaining cars in the RAC Lombard Rally headed for Wales on November 28. On a wet and windy day Vatanen's Peugeot pulled further ahead of the Audi challenge -- led by Mikkola, with Frenchwoman Michele Mouton and U.S. champion Jimmy Buffum in third and fourth place respectively. Vatanen has led the rally since it began, on November 25, proving his car could end the Audi's domination of the race. With co-driver, Terry Harryman, Vatanen looked set to maintain his advance through the Forest of Dean, and Wales. Buffum has been battling against mechanical problems, and was 15 minutes behind Vatanen on November 27. Of the British drivers, Jimmy McRae was lying in fifth place, and Russell Brookes had survived a terrifying crash to take ninth position. The following day, McRae and Sweden's Per Eklund were locked in a private battle for fifth position, with McRae still just on top. Twice RAC Rally winner Roger Clark, who is making a comeback this year in a Porsche, was lying in 15th place despite an absence of several years from competitive driving. The rally ends at Chester on November 29.