101st Targa Florio.All vs Paolo Andreucci and Peugeot in the classic race in Sicily

A lot of drivers all set to challenge the champion from Tuscany that won ten times in Sicily.

Palermo, 19/04/2017 - A lot of drivers are all set to challenge the Peugeot 208 T16 R5 of Paolo Andreucci and Anna Andreussi in a Targa Florio that is the third round of the Italian Rally Championship, race organized by Automobile Club di Palermo with the decisive support of Automobile Club d'Italia. The Tuscan driver is the favourite for a race that he has always been at ease with, and that suits perfectly his driving style and that of the various versions of Peugeot challengers he took to the victory ten times so far. Rivals are stronger as ever in this season though and have what it takes to challenge him for the victory, as shown in the previous rounds of the championship. Among the strongest rivals of the nine time winner of the Italian Champion, Simone Campedelli, Ford Fiesta R5 Orange 1 Racing, Umberto Scandola, Skoda Fabia R5 run by Skoda Motosport Italia, and the Sicilian Andrea Nucita, on another Skoda, the one run by Team Phoenix. Campedelli gets to Sicily motivated to counter-charge from the error made in Sanremo that cost him the retirement after winning in Ciocco and putting in times matching those of the Tuscan of Peugeot in Sanremo. The classic Sicilian race is the best chance for Scandola to turn the mis-fortunes of the first two rounds of the series around, and to improve the important placings that did not fully satisfy him. Similar story for Andrea Nucita, who is a quick driver but that missed a little bit of good luck in the first two rounds. The driver from Messina will be pushed by the warmth of his fans and could run a race in top positions.  Ivan Ferrarotti and Antonio Rusce, both on Ford Fiesta R5, will be called to strong races in Sicily. The two will have to show an improved feeling with their cars aiming at heavy points for the Asphalt Trophy reserved to private drivers. The Sicilian race will be valid for the RGT Italian Championship, for the 2WD Italian Championship, Rally Junior and R1. In the RGT, Fabrizio Andolfi Junior is leading the classification on his Abarth 124 Rally, but in this occasion he will have to face the challenge of the Sicilian Totò Riolo, who already won one edition of the Targa and will be on a car made by the company of the Scorpion.

In the 2WD, the duel will most probably involve Kevin Gilardoni and Riccardo Canzian, both on Clio R3T and in the fight for the single make trophy by Renault, but the Sicilian Marco Pollara will also try to slide in the fight on top on his Peugeot 208 VTI. He is in fact a protagonist of this series, but mostly of the Italian Junior Championship. The Sicilian of Peugeot Team is currently on top of the classification, leading Luca Bottarelli and Andrea Mazzocchi. All the drivers endered in the series reserved to the young talents of the Italian Rally have already shown to have the skills to shine on top. Among these, Mattia Vita, Tobia Gheno, Damiano De Tommaso and Nicola Manfredi. In the Italian R1 Championship, the duel will involve the small but powerful Suzuki Sport 1600 that will challenge each other also in the single make trophy by Suzuki Italia. A special eye will have to be kept on Stefano Martinelli, who has won the opening races of  CIR, Stefano Strabello and Lorenzo Coppe.

Edition 101 of the Targa Florio will start from the Piazza Massimo in Palermo city center tomorrow April 20th, while the chequered flag will drop on the race on Saturday April 22nd at 15.15 in Palermo. Drivers will have to go through 14 tests spanning a total of 178,70 competitive kms, on a total liason of 660.96 km.

CIR Absolute classification after the round of Sanremo: Andreucci 25,50; Perico 18; Campedelli 16,5; Scandola 15; Chentre 11,50; Ferrarotti 7; Nucita 5,50; Rusce 3,50.

Picture of the Podium of Targa Florio 2016 (Photo4)