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There were plenty of national championship rally events happening around the world over the past weekend. Martin Holmes has them all covered. Roger Feghali (pictured above) won the Rally of Lebanon, fourth round of the FIA Middle East Rally Championship in a Skoda Fabia R5. MERC champion Nasser Al Attiyah finished seventh after missing stages when his brand new Fiesta R5 broke a steering arm and went off the road.  Feghali has now won the Lebanon national title 13 times. = = = = Fiesta WRCs came first and second on the sixth round of the Italian World Rally Car championship, the traditional asphalt Rally Friuli Venezia Giulia, won by Albertini Stefano.  Corrado Fontana’s Hyundai i20 WRC was third. = = = = Citroen World Rally Cars took the top five places on the French gravel championship Rallye Terre de Lozere – Sud de France, headed by the C4 of Jean-Marie Cuoq. He was followed by the DS3s of Lionel Baud and former WRC team driver Simon Jean Joseph. The DS3 of Julien Maurin was leading until it was destroyed by fire on the final stage. = = = = Kalle Rovanpera (pictured right) took his Fabia R5 to the international Lõuna-Eesti Rally in Estonia, finished third overall behind the bigger Fiestas of Georg Gross and Egon Kaur, and thereby clinched the Latvian national championship for the second year running! = = = = Disaster for Hayden Paddon at Rally Coromandel, one of only two events which his WRC programme allows him time to contest in his native New Zealand, when he slid off the road in his Hyundai i20 AP4+ and was beached. First and second were the Mazda 2 AP4 cars of Australian Brendan Reeves and New Zealander Andrew Hawkeswood. Paddon had already been well over a minute in the lead after three stages, after Reeves had spun and stalled on the second stage. The final stage was cancelled because a chicane marker was dislodged, altering the course of the route. Hawkeswood now leads the NZ series with two events still to go. = = = = After the 16 candidates in the latest Hyundai Motorsport Driver Development Program went for tests in the team’s headquarters in Alzenau, eight have been selected for the second phase of the selection process. Ultimately only one winner will represent Hyundai Motorsport on the global rally stage, participating in selected WRC2 events in 2018 in a New Generation i20 R5 car. The eight drivers are Emil Bergkvist, Gus Greensmith, Jari Huttunen, Karl Kruuda, Pepe Lopez, Pierre-Louis Loubet, Rene Mandel and Kalle Rovenpera. The initial process covered a range of criteria including technical understanding, English language, PR skills, and communication with mechanics and engineers. Next step is for the drivers, along with their respective co-drivers, to undertake tests on tarmac and gravel in September, before a final decision is made on the prize winner. = = = = Marcos Ligato beat his team leader, Gustavo Saba, to win the FIA Codasur championship Rally Santa Cruz in Bolivia.  Their Fabia R5s run by Saba’s Paraguay based team finished exactly 2.0 seconds apart. = = = =

Gustavo Saba finished second behind his team-mate, Marcos Ligato, in Rally Santa Cruz in Bolivia.

There was a championship points tie at the end of the Ojibwe Forest Rally, final round of the inaugural American Rally Association between the Subaru USA team drivers with Travis Pastrana and David Higgins. The championship deciding clause was based on winning a super special stage. The title went to Pastrana when Higgins lost time going straight on into a barrier.
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