The Abarth 124 Rally enjoyed more success in Europe last weekend on both loose and sealed surfaces with strong performances coming from crews on both the 10th Raliul Aradului KIA in Romania and the 51st Rallye Elba in Italy.
In Romania, on the tough dirt roads of Arad, the 124 Rally of Florin Tincescu and Alina Pop won the R-GT class after surviving the fourteen stage, two leg tenth edition of the Raliul Aradului KIA. They were unopposed in the R-GT class on their way to sealing that win, however the pair finished in a highly impressive eleventh place in the overall classification and mixed it up with plenty of more powerful rally cars.
In Italy last weekend, on an entirely different surface and format, the 124 Rally excelled on the all-asphalt Rallye Elba as Italian driver Christopher Lucchesi and his navigator Marco Pollicino claimed their third win of the season in the R-GT category.
The two finished in an excellent twenty fifth overall on the Italian Rally Championship counting event in their Rally Evolution-entered 124 Rally with forty-nine cars in the end making it to the finish.
There were two R-GT cars on the rally's entry list and once again Lucchesi and Pollicino beat the Eurospeed-entered similar machine of Italians Andrea Modanesi and Roberto Mometti, the difference this time between the cars being two and a half minutes at the end of the ten-stage, two-leg rally on the island of Elba located in the Tyrrhenian Sea.
Modanesi and Mometti however battled hard and finished Elba in an excellent twenty seventh overall on the rally which was won outright by a former Abarth factory driver, Paolo Andreucci.
With these two further wins added to its tally, the 124 Rally has now collected fourteen category victories in Europe this season those coming in the Italian, French, Romanian, Slovenian and Spanish Championships – albeit mostly unopposed – in addition to an excellent 1-2-3-4 finish on the Tour de Corse, a prestigious round of the FIA R-GT World Championship.
In Romania, the Raliul Aradului KIA was particularly demanding with off-road condition special stages alternating with fast stretches and rough trails through woods. These conditions didn’t faze young Romanian driver Tincescu, who was tackling this type of dirt surface for the first time in a rear-wheel-drive car.
"My Abarth 124 Rally was extremely reliable, above all considering that we did not hold back, not even on the roughest patches," he said at the end of the rally. "It was a really tough and selective race and also for this reason I am particularly satisfied of our success."
On the Rallye Elba, both of the Abarth machines reached the finishline once again confirming their excellent reliability. Lucchesi led the R-GT category from start to finish and had the satisfaction of posting impressive times on the longer special stages of this very spectacular and exciting course that crosses the rugged island, which is most famous for being Napoleon's place of exile.
"Four wins in four races mean I can seriously stake my claims to winning the Italian R-GT championship, which was my goal for this season," Lucchesi said. "The outstanding reliability of the Abarth 124 Rally is the key element for accomplishing this feat."
Photos: Abarth 124 Rally (season 2018)