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London to Sydney Marathon

5th June - 4th July 2004

Day 6 - il Ciocco to Arezzo


The four special stages today run through tight twisty undulating Tuscany woodland produced yet another day of sprint racing with scant seconds separating the front runners.

But the man of the moment today was Kiwi Mike Montgomery in one of the McAndrew Hondas who won three of the four stages.

Brit Anthony Ward scored his first ever marathon stage win in his classic Escort Mk 1. The differences between wins and second and third places were just single seconds. Stunning competition.

Italian rally organiser Lucio De Mori was amazed at the pace. "I had no idea marathon men ran at this speed, these men are faster and more spectacular than drivers on two-day events. The standard of car preparation and driving is quite special."

At the end of a hectic day Jimmy McRae maintained his event lead but it has shrunk from 38 seconds yesterday to just eight seconds today. With Mike Montgomery in second and Joe McAndrew continuing his meteoric charge back through the field now holding third place. Forget not that McAndrew has climbed from 19th place after his big 'off' on the second day.

With Graham Lorimer, an ex-pat Kiwi, in fourth place McRae said, "With three of them behind me I feel as if New Zealand has declared war on Scotland."

South African Theo du Toit in his Porsche 911 recognisably decked out in national colours had a small off and sustained minor damage.

Aussie Phil Hooper paired with Canadian Terry Kingsley in the generously proportioned Leyland P76 found it tough going over the tight stages. Kingsley said, "With no power steering and all that weight I'm sure I'm developing arm muscles like Popeye." more...

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