Last year’s Swiss Junior Rally champions Simon and Thibaud Rossel are all set to kick off a semi-official programme with their Clio R3T, prepared by Chazel Technologie Course. Their first outing of the year comes in this weekend’s Critérium Jurassien.

Simon Rossel : “Thanks to Renault Sport Technologies, Renault Suisse, Pirelli Suisse, Auto Sport Suisse and ValJob, we have the privilege of taking part in a programme featuring the four Swiss Championship rallies held on Swiss soil. We’ve had the chance to do half a day’s driving in the Renault Clio R3T at tests held in the south of France with Team Chazel. There’s a world of difference between the Twingo R1 we drove last year, a car that’s very close to the production model, and the Clio R3T, which features very advanced and fully developed technology, with a very broad range of settings in terms of the shock absorbers, axles and suspension, brakes, the engine set-up and traction control etc. It’s all completely new and it’s exciting for us to be aiming high in Group R. It would be a mistake for us to try and get ahead of ourselves, which is why we want to give ourselves time and learn things. We’re lucky to have some really good support in the shape of the people heading up the programme and Team Chazel. We’re also getting some coaching from Laurent Reuche, who doesn’t have a programme right now and was only too happy to accept the invitation from the programme managers and come on board. Our aim for 2015 is to make steady progress in the first three rallies (the Critérium Jurassien, Rallye du Chablais and the Ronde del Ticino) so that we can head into the RIV (Rallye International du Valais) with some experience under our belts and have the opportunity to round off the programme with a good performance.”

Laurent Burgat, head of communication and motorsport at Renault Suisse, was equally enthusiastic : “Renault Suisse has played an active role for many years now in bringing through new talent in Switzerland. With the involvement of Renault Sport Technologies, this programme is a logical step forward in terms of our commitment and our beliefs. Motorsport is part and parcel of Renault’s lifeblood and it’s essential for us to continue investing our efforts in young drivers in Switzerland. With the new Renault Clio R3T, a direct descendant of the Renault Clio R.S. 200 EDC, we have a competitive, modern car with a whole lot of potential. In the hands of Simon and Thibaud Rossel it’s going to liven up the roads in the Swiss Rally Championship, and we’re delighted to have them as ambassadors.”

The Clio R3T ALPS Trophy also gets under way at the Critérium Jurassien, with five cars in the field :
Damien Tozlanian/to be confirmed
Olivier Courtois/Hubert Risser
Michaël Burri/Anderson Levratti
Toni Buemi/Steve Niederhauser
Jean-Pierre Gatti/Bertrand Chagot

Find out more about the Critérium Jurassien and follow the event live at : www.criterium-jurassien.ch

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