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Crugnola and Ometto dominate at Rally Il Ciocco on Citroen C3

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The reigning Italian champion starts off strong in the 2024 Italian Absolute Rally Championship Sparco, finishing with a 28.5-second lead over Basso-Granai. They performed exceptionally well with the debutante Toyota GR Yaris Rally2, while the returning duo of Campedelli-Canton (driving the Skoda Fabia RS Rally2) also made an impressive comeback

An unyielding Andrea Crugnola, accompanied by Pietro Ometto on the notes, piloted the Citroen C3 Rally2 by FPF equipped with Pirelli tires to victory in the 47th Rally Il Ciocco e Valle del Serchio. This rally served as the opening event for the Italian Absolute Rally Championship Sparco, and Crugnola’s performance marked his fourth “Ciocco” win in the last five years, setting the stage for his pursuit of a fourth national title.

In his own words, Crugnola expressed his fondness for this challenging race on the roads of Garfagnana and Mediavalle. Despite securing victories in 10 out of 11 special stages, he emphasized that winning these demanding and historic stages is never easy. Looking ahead, he anticipates tougher competition in the upcoming races, hoping for an entertaining CIAR Sparco championship for all involved.

The competition Crugnola referred to took shape during this season opener, featuring top contenders and intriguing storylines. Notably, the Toyota GR Yaris Rally 2, fielded by Toyota Gazoo Racing Italy, made its second asphalt appearance after the Monte Carlo World Rally Championship. Behind the wheel was the seasoned champion Giandomenico Basso, with Granai providing the pace notes. Basso consistently delivered impressive lap times, securing an unexpected second-place overall finish, trailing by just under 26 seconds.

Close on Basso’s heels, another standout performer emerged at the Rally Il Ciocco: Simone Campedelli, accompanied by Tania Canton, swiftly regained their competitive spirit and quick pace behind the wheel of the Skoda Fabia RS Rally2 Step Five.

A valuable third place was secured, despite a very conservative tire choice during the first round of Saturday’s tests. Andrea Nucita, alongside Pollet, positioned himself among the top contenders in the race, driving the Hyundai i20 N Rally 2 equipped with Michelin tires. His performance showcased that his talent remains intact and, most notably, he clinched victory in a special stage—the brief yet treacherous “Il Ciocco” on the third pass—within the realm of Crugnola’s dominance.