Pirelli Scorpion Ready for Rally d’Italia Sardegna
After battling it out in the Argentine Sierras, the World Rally Championship is back in Europe and drivers are getting ready to hit the tough gravel roads of Sardinia. The Rally d’Italia Sardegna, the sixth round of the FIA World Rally Championship, is also another challenge for Pirelli Scorpion tyres – which, for this rally, come with a hard compound and, as usual, cannot be hand-cut.
This is the sixth year in which the Italian rally has been held in Sardinia and it will again be based in Olbia, although special stages will bring the teams to the southern end of the island where they will have to face challenging and mostly fast terrain, in places narrow and winding with a sandy surface concealing a hard base: all this will make the second passage even harder and the Pirelli Scorpion tyres will be put to the test together with the skill and precision of the drivers.
The rally course – divided into 17 special stages – is very similar to that of last year, even though two new stages have been added to the second day and the last leg features a special stage that has not been used since 2006.
The event is also be the second round of the Pirelli Star Driver programme, a joint initiative between Pirelli and the FIA that gives five upcoming stars in international rallying the chance to participate in the WRC. Each of the drivers competes in a Mitsubishi Evo X Group N car, prepared and looked after during the event by Ralliart Italia. The Portuguese gravel roads in the opening round gave a first taste of how difficult the World Rally Championship would be for these promising drivers as they started to familiarise themselves with their new vehicles; Pirelli believes that in Sardinia they will really be tested in one of the toughest races in the World Championship and be made to show what they’re made of.
“We’re looking forward to competing again in the Rally d’Italia, surrounded by Sardinia’s breathtaking scenery, even though we’re well aware of the tough challenge our tyres are about to face, a challenge they passed last year when the Pirelli Scorpion Hard was first introduced,” said Mario Isola, Pirelli rally manager. “We’re also excited about watching how our five young drivers will manage their second test: during their first WRC event, they showed us how fast they were, now they have to continue gaining experience and kilometres to keep on improving rally after rally.”