Suzuki Upbeat For 'Home' Rally

Suzuki's four Ignis Super 1600 drivers are optimistic about their prospects for a good result on this weekend's Rally Great Britain, the final round in the 2003 Junior World Rally Championship.

Rally Finland, the last gravel rally in the 2003 JWRC series, was won by Suzuki's Daniel Carlsson and the team will aim to repeat this feat through the daunting forests of Wales on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Achieving such a victory will be no easy task. Rally GB is one of the quickest rallies in the Championship and a notoriously tricky event usually characterised by mud and extreme weather although - for this year - the forecast is relatively good.

With Spaniard Salvador Canellas in second place in the 2003 Championship Suzuki still has a slim chance of clinching a Championship victory but with a seven-point gap to leader Brice Tirabassi he faces an intensely tough task.

Final preparation for Rally GB for the Ignis drivers took place in the Sweet Lamb complex, North Wales, last week where they completed a one day shakedown, encountering similar conditions to those expected on the rally itself.

Commenting on Suzuki's prospects Team Manager Risto Laine said that the clear objective is to win the event especially since Rally GB is now the Team's 'home' event.

"Now that we are based in Milton Keynes, Rally GB is our home round of the JWRC. We've got a lot of confidence going into the event following the result in Finland so the objective is definitely to win here in Britain. Salvador faces a really tricky task to take the Championship, but this is rallying so anything can happen!", he said.

Rally Great Britain begins on Thursday November 6 with a superspecial stage in Cardiff Docks starting at 1930 hrs. Drivers then tackle 18 special stages totalling 234 competitive miles [377 km]. The finish takes place in Cardiff on Sunday 9 November in mid afternoon - when the 2003 Junior World Champion will be crowned!

Published 4 November 2003 Melanie Carter

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