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Jos drops out from leading position in Rally de Wallonie

Published on 28 April 2024 by Misha van der Kroon

On Sunday, Jos Verstappen and navigator Renaud Jamoul were at the start of the second day of the Rally de Wallonie, which is part of the Belgian Rally Championship (BRC). The duo ended Saturday in P1, with a lead of 12.0 seconds after a very strong performance in their Skoda Fabia RS Rally2 car.

Unfortunately, disaster struck in the fourth of nine remaining stages. With two flat tyres, the 52-year-old Dutch driver was forced to retire and had to give up his leading position. He was 39.6 seconds ahead of the rest at that moment.

Jos started the second day of the rally with a lead of 12.0 seconds over Adrian Fernémont, who managed to gain 5.5 seconds by winning the first stage (Naninne) on Sunday. Verstappen finished second in that stage. However, the front suspension of local hero Fernémont’s car broke, and the Belgian driver had to abandon the fight. Jos Verstappen took over P1 in the general classification, followed by Maxime Potty, who was 31.8 seconds behind the Dutchman.

“The stages today are again new to me, and sometimes it was very slippery. I’m trying to gain knowledge of the stages,” Jos commented.

At Fernelmont-Eghezée, the second stage of the day, Jos recorded the third fastest time. In the third stage, called Vedrin, Jos was fastest. Niels Reynvoet had passed Potty in the general classification, but Reynvoet was still 39.6 seconds behind Verstappen.

However, during the second round, disaster struck for Verstappen at Nannine. They suffered two flat tyres and were forced to drop out of the rally in which Jos seemed to be on his way to a victory.

The battle for the victory then continued between Reynvoet, Potty and Cedric Cherain. The latter seemed to have the upper hand, but in the last stage Reynvoet managed to take the victory thanks to the rain that had started to fall down. Potty finished second in the general classification, and Cherain completed the podium of the Rally de Wallonie, which consisted of a total of 20 stages spread over 2 days.