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58-year old four times World Rally Champion, Juha Kankkunen, was invited to a special pre-Monte Carlo Rally VIP guest day when he was given the chance to drive a current Toyota Yaris World Rally Car. He drove a Toyota to win his fourth and final title, 25 years ago. = = = = Opening round of the 2018 Russian national championship, the Karelia Rally at  Lahdenpohja, was won by the Mitsubishi Evo X of Stanislav Travnikov. = = = = Skoda R5 driver, Eerik Pietarinen, won the traditional Arctic Rally held in North Finland. Guest driver, Yazeed Al Rahi, entered his Fiesta WRC but retired when he was unwell with ‘flu. = = = = Amid the changes to the operation of the rally on account of the appointment by the FIA of Status Awareness Systems (trading as RallySafe) as the new timing, tracking and connectivity solutions for the 2018-2022 WRC seasons came a confusing announcement from the WRC Promoters. They stated that “ANONIMO becomes Official Timekeeper of WRC”. It transpires that Anonimo are a Swiss watchmaker company and their only association with the WRC is as a commercial sponsor of the series. Confusing! = = = = It is now revealed!  The mysterious car which Henning Solberg is to drive on the Swedish Rally is to be the Ostberg One Bet team 2017 Fiesta WRC. The team has explained how the Russian Gryazin was able to win the Sigdal national rally – all down to running order in very snowy conditions! = = = = Five of the six rounds in the 2018 TER series have been announced. Starting off with the gravel Transilvania Rally in Romania, there will four events on asphalt – Antibes (France), Ypres (Belgium), Madeira and Valais (Switzerland). A sixth event to be run on gravel as the penultimate round has not yet been confirmed. = = = =
Ross Dunkerton

Ross Dunkerton won an Order of Australia Medal. Photo: Martin Holmes

Popular Australian rally driver Ross Dunkerton has been recognised in the 2018 Australia Day Honours, and has received an Order of Australia Medal (OAM). He was been honoured for his services to motorsport in Australia. The 1991 and 1992 FIA Asia Pacific champion was five time Australian Rally Champion. = = = = There were 16 convictions by the Monte Carlo Rally organisers for excessive speeds on recce, from 13 different drivers. The Peugeot 208 driver, Nicolas Latil, had to pay a total of Euros 1625. = = = = The pre-event surprise of the Monte Carlo Rally was that Jerome Degout was feeling unwell at the end of recce, leaving M-Sport Ford’s number three driver, Bryan Bouffier, in a problem. His regular co-driver, Xavier Panseri, was travelling home from the Dakar at the time and was contacted when he changed planes. His itinerary was rerouted to go directly to Grenoble and on to Gap in time for him to attend the Shakedown. He had to use borrowed pacenotes on the event.
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