At the Rally Waldviertel
The OMV CNG Team can be more than happy with their result at the OMV Rally Waldviertel.
Beppo Harrach and co-driver Andreas Schindlbacher conquered a sensational 5th place in the overall ranking with their gas-driven CNG Mitsubishi Lancer
Evo VI. Thereby the main goal of the man from Bruck in the Waldviertel – a top ten place – was surpassed by far and the potential of the gas-driven vehicle more than proven.
Moreover, the OMV driver also superiorly won the class of alternative and diesel cars in front of Michael Böhm (Fiat Stilo JTD). The only problem being a constant overheating of the engine during the stages.
Main goal surpassed
Beppo Harrach had come to the OMV Rally Waldviertel with the professed goal to score a top ten place in the overall ranking despite strong national and international competition.
Furthermore, the OMV CNG Team wanted to use the opportunity to prove the competitiveness of the CNG Mitsubishi Lancer Evo VI among an international starter field. Both goals were more than realised, even if not always easily.
In the overall standings, Harrach/Schindlbacher finished the rally in the Waldviertel less than three and a half minutes behind winner Balasz Benik in sensational 5th place – all this in competition with top drivers from home and abroad. And in the class of alternative and diesel cars, the 27-year-old OMV driver was definitely in a league of his own.
He achieved best times on all 16 special stages and won by a record-breaking lead of 11.27,1 minutes over Michael Böhm in the Fiat Stilo JTD after chief competitor Hannes Danzinger (VW Golf V GTI CNG) had had to retire. “I have more than achieved my goal and am very happy with my performance, too.
Moreover, one could see the potential this car has,” said a beaming Harrach.
At the limit
“I really put my foot down and always was at the limit,” said Beppo Harrach after having crossed the finish line after 16 special stages overall. A fact that had been necessary due to the strong competition but also had taken its toll on the Mitsubishi.
The OMV driver had already complained of constant overheating of the engine on day one of the OMV Rally Waldviertel but taking the foot off the accelerator had not been an option: “The problem started already on the first special stage. And the overheating continued throughout day two as well which had us lose power. Therefore I tried to go as fast as possible on the short stages and took it a little easier on the longer ones.” In the end, these tactics obviously paid off.
Rally Waldviertel : Final results
01. Balasz Benik/Bunkoczi (Hu) Ford Focus WRC 1:55:35,8 hrs.
02. Raimund Baumschlager/Zeltner (Aut) Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX +1:29,8 min.
03. Herman Gassner/Thannhäuser (Ger) Mitsubishi Llancer Evo IX +2:22,8 min.
04. Achim Mörtl/Schwarz (Ö) Subaru Impreza WRX STi +2:36,2 min.
05. Beppo Harrach/Schindlbacher (Ö) CNG Mitsubishi Lancer Evo VI +3:17,1 min.
Press release OMV