Suzuki Gets Ready For The Rough Stuff

Suzuki Ignis Super 1600

Suzuki Ignis

The Suzuki Ignis Junior World Rally Championship squad is ready for this weekend's Acropolis Rally (4-6 June), following a successful test session at Chateau Lastours, France.

The Acropolis is renowned as one of the toughest tests on the entire World Rally Championship, with sharp rocks and searingly hot temperatures. The event is based around the industrial town of Lamia, two hours to the west of Athens, and contains several notoriously rough stages putting the emphasis on reliability as much as speed. But the Suzuki drivers believe they are well-prepared, after already sampling the Ignis in rough conditions.

The broken-up and rocky roads of Chateau Lastours are similar to the stages that the Suzuki crews will encounter on the next two Junior World Rally Championship events. The test concentrated on suspension work, and it was also a chance for the Suzuki drivers to get used to driving the 2004-specification Ignis Super 1600 on rough gravel.

Guy Wilks, Kosti Katajamaki and P-G Andersson all took part in the test, but Mirco Baldacci was forced to give the session a miss as he had a high fever. Over the course of the four-day test, the drivers covered approximately 700 kilometres between them. The surface was damp on the first day, but dried out over the remaining three days.

The Ignis was totally reliable throughout the entire test and the drivers were delighted with the speed and reliability of their Ignis on aggressive surfaces.

The Acropolis Rally kicks off with a ceremonial start at 1745 in Lamia on Thursday, before drivers tackle the first of 22 gruelling special stages.

Published 3 June 2004 Melanie Carter

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