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Following on from R5 concept designs announced by MPart in Sweden for the Mitsubishi Mirage and Holzer in Germany for the Opel Corsa comes a design announced by Mellors Elliot Motorsport in England.  

The new Proton R5 has a Lancer Evo X engine.The MEM design is based on the Proton Iriz but powered by a turbocharged Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X engine, reduced to 1.6 litre and fitted with Xtrac four wheel drive transmission.  

MEM have a long and successful association in rallying with the Malaysian manufacturer, but the parent company has not announced plans to give official support to this project.  

It is also not known whether Proton’s new commercial partnership with the Chinese car manufacturer, Geely, will influence Proton’s motorsport policies.

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Sebastien Loeb and his co-driver wife Severine won the Rallye du Chablais, round 2 of the Alpine Rally Trophy, held in Switzerland south of Montreux.  

He drove a Peugeot 208T16, finishing over a half minute in front of Sebastien Carron’s Ford Fiesta R5.  Belgian driver Pieter Tsjoen was fourth in another Fiesta R5.

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Why was the APRC Rally China cancelled?  One day made all the difference!  

The original dates for the APRC event were to be 7-9 July, but the organisers demanded this to be changed to 8-10 July.  This was a shift of only one day, but it made a vital difference to the shipping schedules for the APRC championship cars, en route to the following event in Malaysia.  

The Chinese championship rally due to run concurrently with the APRC will go ahead and run on the new dates.

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Qatar driver Nasser Al-Attiyah has set himself a very hard task.  

The FIA’s multiple champion in WRC2, Middle East Rally Championship and cross country now wants to win the FIA’s European Rally Championship by entering only four outings, whereas it is allowed to score points from six events.  

His entry in the Acropolis Rally was his first ever in this series, although he had entered the Acropolis many times before when the event counted for other series.  

Al-Attiyah confirmed he would also contest the Cyprus Rally, Rally Rzeszow and Barum Czech Rally Zlín in his Autotek Motorsport-run Ford Fiesta R5.  

Interesting to note the all-asphalt Barum is included, a surface on which he has had little previous success.

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Entries for the Ypres Rally (23-24 June) close on June 7th, with a pressing issue waiting to be resolved.  

So far it is known that 30 R5 cars plan to take part.  The highest number of R5 entries on an orthodox rally to date is 31.  

Last year’s single venue non championship Monza Rally attracted 38 R5 cars.

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The Italian driver “Lucky” (Luigi Battistoli) scored his second FIA European Historic championship win this year, this time the Asturias Historic Rally, again in his Lancia Delta Integrale 16v.  

His main championship rival, Erik Comas, was second in his Lancia Stratos.

- Martin Holmes 

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