Following a day of rest and some easy transit sections, the competitors in the 2007 Transsyberia Rally took on Stage 9 yesterday and it wasn’t quite so easy. Looking back though, the easy transit on Friday showed a weakness for the Porsche camp that foreshadowed the outcome of Sunday’s Special. Tires.
“With these tires you can go for a ride in an English park, but not compete in a rally in Mongolia” complained Overall Leader Armin Schwarz.
Many Porsche teams had problems with multiple tire failures, including the Canadian team of Nierop & Yap. Other Cayenne drivers suffered oil system failures following a trip through a swamp. Following Friday’s tire problems, Porsche team boss Juergen Kern called the issue driver error. Yesterday he said “We will have to analyze the cause this evening”. I have no doubt that the drivers were less than impressed with Mr. Kern’s analysis of their skills.
The leader board for the stage looks quite different from previous stages, as Schwarz dropped to 11th position, with the stage win taken by Simon & Matt Garnham in a Toyota Land Cruiser dubbed The Big White Box. Interestingly, 2nd place on the stage was taken by the Porsche Carrera of Eric Brandenburg. Sunday’s stage really shook up the overall board as well, with Schwarz down in 7th and Garnham in the top spot. Nierop and Yap have moved all the way up to 12th place!
And now, another video. This time we have some coverage of the first stage from the Suzuki team.