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Thierry Neuville & Nicolas Gilsoul (i20 R5) came back to the Ypres Rally as current leaders of the WRC, hoping for better luck on this year’s event. They took the lead on stage 2 and with a total of 15 fastest or joint fastest stage times they took victory by just over 40 seconds, which pleased the local crowds. Reigning Belgian National Champions Vincent Verschueren & Veronique Hostens (Fabia R5) came home in second place with 4 stage wins but they were under pressure from Kris Princen & Bram Eelbode (Fabia R5) who set fastest stage times on 4 of the last 5 stages, finishing just over 8 seconds behind, taking the final podium place.

The British Championship crews were present for the second year in a row and there was drama up until the very end. Keith Cronin & Mikie Galvin (i20 R5) went in to the final stage with a healthy lead over the other British crews only for a puncture to rob him of victory. He slid back to 3rd place handing victory to Matt Edwards & Darren Garrod (Fiesta R5). Edwards had a torrid start to the event with an intermittent fault on his car damaging his qualifying run and opening night of the rally. A solid run from Edwards on the Saturday saw him climb to 2nd place before the surprise promotion on the final stage. David Bogie & John Rowan (Fabia R5) were 2nd, 18 seconds back, with Cronin just 7 seconds further back.

In the 2WD battle a failing clutch saw Patrick Snijers & Davy Thierie (997 GT3) fall back on the final stage. Claudie Tanghe & Denis Squedin (997 GT3) were the first 2WD crew home in 16th overall, after keeping Snijers honest all rally. Snijers just held on to 2nd place just 3.4s ahead of Chris Van Woensel & Diederik Pattyn (997 GT3) in 18th and 19th places overall, respectively. James Williams & Ross Whittock (Adam R2) were 24th overall and the first R2 crew home, winning that category by over a minute and a half against a whole host of local drivers.

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