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Twenty hours of rain in northern Italy have forced the organisers of the 48th Rallye Sanremo to throw in the towel and cancel the first of two legs of the rally.


Sergio Maiga, President of the Automobile Club Sanremo, explained: “The local safety authorities met this afternoon to consider the situation, in the light of the worsening weather that is expected in the region. Tonight another 32mm of rain is forecast in the local area, and this has meant that the necessary permissions have been revoked. We understand the situation, and so we have sadly been forced to take appropriate action and cancel leg one.”


“You have to admire the organisers of the Rallye Sanremo for taking this difficult decision. To run in conditions like this would have been dangerous and disrespectful to those who have suffered because of the bad weather,” said Andrea Aghini.


“These things happen,” said Paolo Andreucci. “I know that the organisers did everything they could for us to get underway, but there's nothing you can do in a case of force majeure such as this one. Let's just hope that we can get going on leg two.”


“It's a pity, but when things are like this the only thing to do is to accept the decision of the authorities, as the rally organisers have sensibly done,” concluded Gilles Panizzi.

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