João Ferreira/David Monteiro (Mini JCW Rally) won for the third time in three events, this year at CPTT. With another brilliant performance, this time backwards, they reached the triumph after finishing the 1st day…in fourth place.
The curtain fell on the second edition of Baja Oeste de Portugal, an event that brought the TT much closer to large urban centers, which was immediately reflected in an immense human mole. Last year, the Scuderia Castelo Branco competition had already made that fact clear, public, it was ‘thing’ that was not missing, and this year this issue… multiplied. Nowadays, only the mythical Baja Portalegre 500 beats this ECB race in terms of audience, and as Nuno Matos said: “it is a race that makes a great contribution to the CPTT and it is a pleasure to compete, because we are always, literally, we are accompanied by fans at all times, which is fantastic.”
In sporting terms, there are no two without three! Despite finishing the first day of the race 1m49.2s behind João Ramos/Filipe Palmeiro (Toyota Hilux), in fourth place, and also with João Dias/João Miranda (BRP Can Am Maverick X3) and Tiago Reis/Valter Cardoso ( Toyota Hilux) in front of him, João Ferreira/David Monteiro (Mini JCW Rally) surpassed the margin for the three competitors and secured the third consecutive victory in the Portuguese Off-Road Championship.
A fantastic recovery, with the race having at the midpoint 3 of SS2 its turning point, as João Ramos was losing 20.9s and suddenly started to yield 2m54.4s, due to a puncture, dropping positions in the SS, and in general. The Dama Negra rider still recovered something until the end, even having punctured the second time, but there was no time to prevent João Ferreira from winning, finishing with 2m40.6s in SS2, which meant a margin of 51.4s in the general . However, in the end, he was penalized by five minutes due to not having a spare wheel in his car. For explanations, see box (read separately). CLICK HERE
João Dias again had a very meritorious performance in his BRP Can Am Maverick X3, and ended up finishing second, finishing 1m39.5s from the front, winning again the T3, which happened for the third time in three races, this time with a tasty 2nd place. A remarkable performance at all levels, as it is true that he took advantage of the fact that this event has areas where the SSVs can play stick by stick with the T1, the truth is that without good driving there is nothing to do and João Dias managed to do it bright shape.
In a race that was very tough for him, Tiago Reis still finished the first day in third, just under a minute ahead, but then he couldn’t get better than a place on the podium. The pilot still suffers from the injuries of the Baja TT ACP accident, he is not at 100% in physical terms, right in the preview of the race he confessed that he had to understand what he could do and the truth is that it was a test of great effort for him, still with a positive result.
If in the prologue he confessed this concern to us, what to say after two long and hard selective sectors. After the third place in Beja and the retirement in Grândola, he will have to do a good ‘2nd lap’ in order to see what is possible in terms of fighting for the title.
Another good race by Luís Recuenco/Sergio Peinado (Mini JCW Rally), who finished fifth overall, their best result of the year, after being 14th in Beja and ninth in Baja TT ACP. They were consistent, but they didn’t show speed for more.
Alejandro Martins/José Marques (Mini John Cooper Works Rally JCW Rally) finished sixth overall, in a race that was more complicated than expected. They won the prologue, but in SS1 they had several setbacks.
They complained about the road book, digital and traditional, where, according to the pilot, he did not hit the ‘boot with the droplet’ several times. With that, he could not improve the position with which he ended the 1st day, the sixth. After being 5th in Beja and on the podium in Grândola, this was the worst performance of the year so far.
Francisco Barreto and Carlos Silva (Ford Ranger) finished in 7th position overall, the same gauge they have had this season, after 8th place in Beja and sixth in Grândola. On the first day, a transmission failure caused them to run on 3-wheel drive’, which led to a considerable loss of time. Consistently, they finished the race on a good record.
Alexandre Pinto and Fausto Mota (Bombardier Can Am Maverick X3) won the T4 and were eighth overall. In a tough race, and often winding in good parts of the course, the small SSVs were able to put up more fights to the much more powerful T1, and with that it is not surprising the third place of João Dias and the eighth of this duo.
Nuno Tordo and João Serôdio (Nissan Navara) finished ninth overall and easily won the T8 Group, with a good margin over Michael Braun/Ivo Santos (Porsche Cayenne Proto). Three races, three triumphs for Nuno Tordo and consolidated leadership in the championship.
Johan Senders/Luís Bento took their nissan Navara to third place in the T8 and 11th place overall, ahead of Rui Oliveira/Pedro Oliveira (BRP Can Am Maverick X3), seconds from T4 and 12th overall.
After two second places in Beja and Grândola, Ricardo Nascimento/Ricardo Brito (BMW X5) were only quarters of the T8 here, after a more complicated race.
Joel Marrazes/José Motaco (Nissan Navara) were 19th overall and won T2 well against the runners-up in the group, João Franco/Pedro Inácio (Nissan Navara DD2).
The Scuderia Castelo Branco race was tough, and there were several competitors who got in the way. For example, Alexandre and Rui Franco (Mercedes V230 TD), who finished the 1st day in seventh place in the general ranking, fell by the wayside in SS2.
Who was also doing very well, they were third in the general, near the end of the SS1, Nuno Madeira / Filipe Serra (Ford Ranger) had a strong departure from the road, flipped and damaged the car a lot. No longer returned to SS2.
Nuno Matos and Joel Lutas also couldn’t resist the toughness of the race, as the Opel Mokka Proto’s turbo gave way to the SS2’s Km3, after finishing the 1st day in the top 10.
César and Tânia Sequeira (Mini Proto) were on the verge of the top 10 on the 1st day, but would fall by the wayside on the second.
Other of the great unlucky ones of the race were Christian Baumgart/Alberto Andreotti who were in the front fights in SS1, but towards the end, about 20 km from the finish line, the Toyota Hilux engine stopped and only worked intermittently until the end of the race. SS, pushing the team to the ends of the classification, where they had a lot of good ‘company’, all with problems of different kinds, from self-inflicted mechanics as was the case of André Amaral and Nélson Ramos who left the road, hitting hard on a tree, left along the way.
Lino Carapeta and Rui António (Bowler) were also very late on the 1st day, as were Miguel Casa and João Luz (VW Amarok), and also the fast Brazilian duo Adroaldo Weisheimer/Rafael Capoani (Toyota Hilux) who initially also walked by positions ahead of the race. José Faria and José Janela (Ford Ranger T8) had problems with the differential.
CPTT returns to action later this month, from the 27th to the 29th of May, with Baja de Loulé, the fourth round of the Portugal Off-Road Championship.
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