Caribbean Rally Team to begin Shakedown in Spain

Caribbean Rally Team to begin Shakedown in Spain

Written by Rodney Granado and Narend Sooknarine

SALOU, SPAIN. After a hectic morning of qualifying stages in Salou, both WRC driver John Powell and navigator Mike Fennel are ready for the shakedown stages driving a WRC Ford Fiesta RS.

With Thursday’s qualifying session permitting two complete passes of free practice and one complete pass in an attempt to set the fastest time possible in championship order, Powell and Fennel churned up a reasonable time 12 seconds behind leader Sebastien Loeb.    The qualifying stage was a great opportunity to see teams in action along with service crews.  Jamaica`s Mike Fennel said, “We had some struggles in feeling out the car today.  There was a difference of shifting which came at about 8000 rpm, but we are still confident for Friday`s shakedown on the gravel.  The reception is great from all the WRC racers and we have grown accustomed to the difference in time which is roughly about six hours ahead of the Caribbean. John and myself have made the qualification and we are excited.”

Both Powell and Fennel were featured later in the evening at the meet and greet event for all WRC teams held at the breathtaking Barcelona Cathedral`s compound.  There was a ramp provided where the Mayor of Barcelona officially commenced Rally de Espana 2012 amidst loud cheers from Spanish rally fans.  Several WRC teams were also photographed and their race cars paraded down the ramp and disappeared into the streets.  Day 1 on Friday will prove a better option for the Caribbean pair as they head out to the gravel stages in Gandesa, Pessels and Terra Alta in the morning from Port Aventura.  Lunch will not be long as teams are afforded only thirty minutes and resume to a mixture of gravel and asphalt stages.  However, these stages are much longer and should provide some challenges for the newest members of the FORD M-SPORT team.

Rally de Espana is the last event on the WRC agenda for 2012 but is expected to  generate large crowds throughout the four day schedule and will conclude on Sunday with a Special Stage.

Coverage sponsored in part by The Trinidad & Tobago Ministry of Sport
Trinidad & Tobago Ministry of Sport

John Powell and Mike Fennel in their Ford Fiesta RS WRC at the Ceremonial Start of Rally Spain

John Powell (right) and Mike Fennel at the Service Park in Salou, Spain.

John at the Shakedown stage in Salou, Spain

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