Frustrating Rally Corsica for Romain Dumas
Romain Dumas’s latest appearance in the R-GT Cup finished prematurely during the World Rally Championship Rally Corsica. Behind the wheel of his Porsche 911 GT3 RS 4.0l entered by his own RD Rallye Team, the Alès, France native was leading his class at the start of the second day of competition when a water leak due to a pebble on the road forced retirement from the event.
What’s the assessment of R-GT?
“We are obviously disappointed with how things panned out,” explains Romain Dumas. “Once again we were competitive, but on such a difficult rally, the finish was our primary objective. That wasn’t the case and it’s hard to retire at the start of the second day after having not committed any errors and were very cautious. It’s frustrating because, despite the weather, we enjoyed ourselves. I like these types of conditions, and I’m at ease in them. I’m comforted in the fact that the RD Rallye Team entered two Porsches in the French Rally Championship during the event. Both finished and their respective driver/co-driver pairings were appreciative of our hard work. It was mission accomplished in this matter.”
Hervé Poly and Xavier Lyonnet Mariani (#95), with a 997 GT3 RS finished second in the GT+ class. Richard Thiery and Olivier Fournier (#100) in a 996 GT3 RS, finished second in the GT10 class.
As the Valais Rally will be held on the same weekend as the 6 Hours of Shanghai, Romain Dumas will not take part in the R-GT Cup finale. It’s therefore time to assess the season for the Frenchman, author of the fastest stage time in his class on 39 occasions, against 22 for François Delecour. “My feeling about this season in R-GT is mixed,” he admits. “On one hand, we proved that our Porsche 911 GT3 RS 4.0l is certainly the quickest R-GT. The stats confirm it and, apart from Monte Carlo, these were rallies that I was discovering for the very first time. We always dominated wherever we went. Sometimes by a big margin. On the other hand, we lacked reliability, like at Ypres and Corsica and that cost us two victories. We must learn from this.”
Romain Dumas’s Rally Corsica in detail
After his victory at Rally Germany in August, Romain Dumas was quick to get back to business in the R-GT Cup by taking the reigns from the very first stage, held Friday in difficult weather conditions. Romain signed the fastest time by an 11.3 second margin. Following the cancelation of the second stage due to poor weather, he concluded the day by again taking fastest stage time in SS3. The 1.4 second gap was not a true representation as Romain was struggling with a transmission issue. During the service, the team made repairs and the Porsche 911 GT3 RS 4.0l began Saturday as class leader. While SS4 was cancelled, Romain was forced to stop in SS5, a small rock cutting a hose in the engine bay causing a water leak. Alongside his co-driver Denis Giraudet, he was forced to retire from the rally and decided not to take part in Rally 2 as a clash in dates between the final date of the R-GT Cup and Romain’s FIA World Endurance Championship duties prevents him from being eligible for the class championship.
Next up, Rally Corsica Historics!
While Christian Schmitter, competing in the French Mountain Championship in a Porsche 911 GT2 developed by RD Limited, took part in the Corsica Rally – 10,000 curves, four Porsches will take part in Rally Corsica Historics (Oct. 5-10). Christian Kelders and Christophe Kerkhove (#6) will compete on the Corsican roads with a 911 RS 3.0l Gr4. Alexandre Vernazza and Thomas De Campou (#48) will be behind the wheel of a 911 SC Gr 4, as will Laure Many and Françoise Conconi (#132) in the women’s cup. Gerard Swaton and Gérard Canavese (#66) will pair together to drive the Porsche SC Gr3.
Romain Dumas will rejoin the Porsche Team in a few days for the sixth round of the FIA World Endurance Championship: the 6 Hours of Fuji (Japan).