Winner of a superb battle with Florian Bernardi, Boris Carminati takes his first victory in the Clio R3T Trophy France at the conclusion of Rallye Aveyron Rouergue Occitanie. Despite losing time when he went off the road, Bernardi narrowly snatched second place to Mathieu Walter.

On Friday morning, the battle was underway. On an all-new special stage for all the crews, Boris Carminati attacked to post the first scratch time ahead of Thibaut Poizot, Florian Bernardi, Riccardo Canzian and Olivier Delaporte.

Bernardi answered on the stage from Campouriez to Le Nayrac, which is considered to be one of the toughest of the rally. He took 11 seconds out of Carminati. Further back, the gaps were large, with Canzian and Poizot conceding nearly a minute. Once again the fastest on SS3, Florian Bernardi came to the service area with the lead ahead of Boris Carminati, Thibaut Poizot, Riccardo Canzian, Olivier Delaporte and David Nafría.

Decidedly headstrong between Saint-Julien de Rodelle and Sébrazac, Carminati retook the lead of the rally after SS4. In the top ten at the conclusion of the first leg, Sara Williams retired after an incident on this special stage.

The battle continued with Bernardi back on top after SS5. After having lost a lot of time when he missed a corner, third place Thibaut Poizot was under threat from Delaporte and Canzian. Further down the order, Mathieu Walter took sixth place from David Nafría. Further back, Damien Tozlanian and José Javier Pérez moved ahead of Guillaume Jean.

The order remained the same in the sixth and final special stage of the day. The battles up and down the order were intact with the promise of a second intense day of competition.

Saturday began dramatically with Bernardi having an off between Trémouilles and Salmiech! The Vaucluse native made it to the finish after losing more than four minutes. He dropped to eighth place between Tozlanian and Pérez.

The morning stages saw Riccardo Canzian come on strong. After getting past Delaporte on SS8, the Italian driver made the most of the time lost by Poizot on SS9 (incident and puncture) to move up to second place! The Moyrazès stage also saw Pérez go off the road.

Before the final loop, Carminati had a more than three minute lead from Canzian, Walter, Delaporte, Nafria and Bernardi, who with two best times moved up to sixth place.

With the bit between his teeth, the winner of the first two rounds of the season continued to push. He was 44.9s quicker than anyone else on the second Moyrazès run, which saw him move past Walter, while Canzian, Delaporte and Aymard all retired after going off the road!

Behind, Boris Carminati, Florian Bernardi finished runner-up, while Mathieu Walter completed the podium as well as finished first in the Junior category. Spain’s David Nafría won the Gentleman category and was fourth overall ahead of Damien Tozlanian, Guillaume Jean, Pierre Lerosier, Thibaut Poizot, Dominique Patenotte, Yoann Lambert and Sara Williams.

Cédric Robert took another win in the R3 class. In a tight battle with Manu Guigou throughout the first leg, the native of Saint Etienne took advantage when his rival suffered a puncture on SS6 to take the lead and never look back.

Rallye Mont-Blanc Morzine (September 7-9) will host the next round of the Clio R3T Trophy France.

Quotes

Boris Carminati: “I began the rally by attacking really hard from SS1. As it was a brand new special stage for everyone, I knew that my lack of experience wasn’t going to be a handicap. The first leg was a battle from start to finish and it was satisfying to see that we could match Florian’s pace. This bodes well for the future! I was a little frustrated that this duel didn’t continue on Saturday, but it was long day, because I had to manage my lead, while avoiding the pitfalls. It was not easy to enjoy this result but it will remain a great moment. Bring on the Mont-Blanc!”

Clio R3T Trophy France – Rallye Aveyron Rouergue Occitanie

1. Boris Carminati – Marine Lacruz – 2h07:33.5
2. Florian Bernardi – Victor Bellotto +2:58.2
3. Mathieu Walter – Thibault Raincourt +3:20.8
4. David Nafría - Pere Palomares Requena +4:42.6
5. Damien Tozlanian – Pierre Blot +5:04.5
6. Guillaume Jean – Loris Pascaud +7:14.4
7. Pierre Lerosier - Marie Corbineau +8:15.5
8. Thibaut Poizot – Marion Grand +8:45.1
9. Dominique Patenotte – Anthony Chandelier +13:08.4
10. Yoann Lambert - Laurent Camus +17:39.5
11. Sara Williams - Patrick Walsh +3h59:00.1
Ab. Olivier Delaporte – Sébastien Voitey
Ab. Riccardo Canzian - Andrea Prizzon
Ab. José Javier Pérez - Alberto Espino
Ab. Jérôme Aymard - Sandrine Aymard

Clio R3T Trophy France General Classification

1. Florian Bernardi, 83 points
2. Boris Carminati, 49 points
3. Thibaut Poizot, 35 points
4. Mathieu Walter, 35 points
5. Damien Tozlanian, 28 points
6. Olivier Delaporte, 21 points
7. Guillaume Jean, 20 points
8. José Javier Perez, 12 points
9. David Nafría, 12 points
10. William Pitot, 10 points
11. Florent Joly, 6 points
12. Jérôme Aymard, 6 points
13. Pierre Lerosier, 6 points
14. Dominique Patenotte, 2 points
15. Alex Sabater, 1 point
16. Yoann Lambert, 1 point

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