Ville Silvasti and Risto Pietilainen were the leading FIA EHRC contenders on the first day of the 37th Sanremo Historic Rally, the 9th and final round of the 2022 season.
IMAGE: ACI SPORT
The no1 Lancia Rally 037 of the Category 4 Championship contender took the fastest overall time on five of the six stages held on day one in the hills above San Remo, finishing the day 77 seconds ahead of Category 4 Championship leaders Mats Myrsell and Esko Junttila in the no2 Ford Sierra RS Cosworth 4×4.
There were three Category 4 retirements on the first day, including the no5 Opel Manta 400 of Juergen Geist and Nico Otterbach on stage 2, the no4 Ford Sierra RS Cosworth 4×4 of Tibor Erdi and Zoltan Csoko on stage 4 and the no14 Renault 11 Turbo of Carlos Sampayo and Irene Serrano Grande. This promoted the no16 Skoda Favorit 136L of Oldrich Kovarik and Marek Kapic to third in Category 4 and 9th overall.
The no7 Ford Escort RS 1800 MK2 of Valter Jensen and Erik Pedersen finished the sixth stage in third overall and first in Category 2 after overhauling the no8 Ford Escort RS 1800 of Richard and Lucie Ronay after the Austrians had led the category for the previous five stages.
The Norwegians took the fastest overall time on stage 5 to close the gap to just 9.1 seconds and then went 16 seconds faster on stage 6 to finish the day with a 7.3 second advantage. Category championship contender Carlo Mylle finished the day in fifth overall and third in Category 2 in the no6 Porsche Carrera RSR, 2 minutes 32 seconds ahead of Category 2 Championship leaders Pietro Corredig and Sonia Borghese in the no10 BMW 2002 Ti.
The no3 Porsche 911 SC of Karl Wagner and Gerda Zauner suffered another technical issue that forced the Austrians to retire for the third event in a row. This handed the Category 3 lead to Tim Metcalfe and John Connor in the no9 Ford Escort RS 1800, who finished the day in 6th overall.
Category 1 was led by the Porsche 911S of Antonio Parisi and Giuseppe D’Angelo, the Italians finishing the sixth stage 4 minutes and 26 seconds ahead of their teammates Carlo Fiorito and Marina Bertonasco in the no15 BMW 2002 Ti.