Held as part of the French Tarmac Rally Championship, the Rallye du Rouergue (6-8 July) will be the venue for the third round of the Clio R3T France Trophy. Winner of the opening two rounds, Cédric Robert has the chance to keep his impressive run going and move even further clear of his rivals before the start of the second half of the season.
After Le Touquet and Antibes, the Rallye Aveyron Rouergue Occitanie will conclude the first half of the season in the Clio R3T France Trophy. The main contenders will go up against one another on tarmac in the south-west of France at a round that may prove crucial in the title race.
Unbeaten this year, Cédric Robert has the chance to confirm his dominance of the category in Aveyron. The leader of the overall standings will have the advantage of experience since this will be his sixteenth appearance at Rallye du Rouergue, an event he has already won three times !
Cédric Robert must nevertheless be wary of the threat posed by his challengers, and by Florian Bernardi in particular. After giving more experienced drivers a run for their money at events that were new to him, Bernardi will be able to make use of his knowledge of a rally that he won in the Twingo R1 Trophy in 2013.
Currently third and fourth in the standings, Kevin van Deijne – who will have co-driver Kris Botson back alongside him – and Damien Tozlanian will attempt to get up to speed quickly as they seek to claim their first podium of the season. A year ago, the two men finished second and sixth respectively next to Rodez.
Sara Williams will also be competing in Aveyron. After scoring her first points last time out, the Briton will be making her debut at the Rallye du Rouergue, once again aiming to keep learning and show that she is improving. After retiring in Antibes, David Sauvaigo will also be competing on the tarmac in Aveyron for the first time, but he will nonetheless be aiming to collect his first points of the season.
On his competitive debut in the Clio R3T Trophy France, Dominique Patenotte has chosen an event he knows well, unlike the Italians Riccardo Canzian and Michele Tassone. The former will be contesting his first rally in France after producing a fine performance in his Clio R3T at the Targa Florio and the Rally del Salento, whilst the latter is the 2015 Italian Junior Champion.
After missing Antibes, Frédéric Perriat will be back to compete at the Rallye du Rouergue for the first time since 2002. Lastly, following on from his R3 class wins at the Rallye Régional du Clain and the Rallye National de la Vienne, experienced driver Philippe Rageau will be tackling the Rallye du Rouergue for the first time on his return to the Clio R3T France Trophy.
The Rallye du Rouergue will be held over two days. Friday’s leg (7 July) will feature two loops of two stages, followed by three repeated stages on Saturday (8 July). The route includes the famous Campouriez–Le Nayrac and Luca–Moyrazes stages, as part of a total competitive distance of 206.38km.
List of entries – Clio R3T France Trophy
#18 Cédric Robert – Matthieu Duval
#19 Florian Bernardi – Xavier Castex
#20 Kevin van Deijne – Kris Botson
#21 Damien Tozlanian – Pierre Blot
#22 Frédéric Perriat – Julie Bessonet
#23 Riccardo Canzian – Matteo Nobili
#24 Michele Tassone – Fabio Grimaldi
#25 Philippe Rageau – Alexandra Rageau
#26 Sara Williams – Mark Glennester
#27 Dominque Patenotte – Sabryna Salva-Lopez
#28 David Sauvaigo – Stéphane Marquez
Overall standings (before round three)
1. Cédric Robert, 60 points
2. Florian Bernardi, 42 points
3. Kevin Van Deijne, 25 points
4. Damien Tozlanian, 20 points
5. Pascal Bérard, 16 points
6. Jean-Paul Monnin, 15 points
7. Frédéric Flajolet, 10 points
8. Frédéric Perriat, 8 points
9. Pascal Aimé, 8 points
10. Stéphane Gragnola, 6 points
11. Sara Williams, 2 points