2012 Cross Country Rally World Championship
Following a start from third Wednesday at the Sealine Cross Country Rally near the Losail International Circuit in Qatar, MRW Repsol KTM’s Marc Coma struck first, winning the first stage.
Aboard the KTM 450 Rally, Coma began the Sealine Rally, Round 2 of the 2012 Cross Country Rally World Championship, with a strategy that proved significant. Coma finished the 205-mile time section of stage one in 3.45:54, following 0:08 of a second back by rival Joan Barreda.
MRW KTM says: “Thanks to his third place in yesterday’s prologue, Coma last night had the chance to pick third on the starting order. He obliged and started as one of the furthest back on Stage One. His aim was to catch the riders ahead of him and follow their tracks. Knowing how competitive the four-stage rally will be, the MRW rider decided to push as hard as possible.”
Stage two of five on Thursday will also feature a 205-mile timed section in the rally that runs more than 705 miles to the deserts of Qatar.
Marc Coma (MRW Respol KTM 450 Rally) says: “We started well, made no mistakes and were waiting to see how the unknowns would affect us -it’s a new country for us and we aren’t familiar with the terrain. There was a lot of rock in the Special Stage, a lot of navigating to be done and a final section of dunes. We did a good job and had fun today. We all started close together thanks to the starting order and had difficulties establishing an advantage, so we are optimistic because we are going well.
“We open up the stage tomorrow, but as the Special Stage is the same as today we won’t be at such a disadvantage setting off first, because the track is already marked from today’s stage.”
2012 Sealine Cross Country Rally Stage One Results:
1. Marc Coma 03:47:54
2. Joan Barreda +00:00:08
3. Hélder Rodrigues +00:03:11
4. Rubén Faría +00:05:48
5. Jordi Viladoms +00:06:17
2012 Sealine Cross Country Rally Classification (after one of five stages):
1. Marc Coma 03:50:41
2. Joan Barreda +00:00:06
3. Hélder Rodrigues +00:03:10
4. Rubén Faría +00:05:52
5. Jordi Viladoms +00:06:23