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A total of 86 crews started from Jambes for the 36th running of the Rallye de Wallonie and with 22 R5’s, an S2000, 4 Porsche 997 GT3’s and a whole host of group N and modified cars, there was plenty of quality. Sébastien Bedoret & Thomas Walbrecq (Fabia R5) took the first stage before Cédric Cherain & Xavier Portier (Polo R5) took the 2nd run through the Citadel to take an early lead. Adrian Fernémont & Samuel Maillen (Fabia R5) were fastest through SS4, following the cancellation of SS3 and another fastest time on SS6 was enough to see them take the lead. With another 8 stages to go on Saturday, 4 more stage wins saw Fernémont hold a 17s going in to the final day.

Cherain was in 2nd with almost 40s further behind the 3rd seeds, Ghislain de Mevius & Johan Jalet (Fabia R5) in 3rd place. Bedoret was under 10s back in 4th just over a second ahead of Xavier Bouche & Lorin Jamar (Polo R5). In 2WD Pascal Gaban & Jean-Pierre Delmelle (997 GT3) were leading and 13th overall. Just over a minute back were Stephan Hermann & Jean-Marc Bodarwe in their Fiat Punto S1600 just a few seconds in front of the Porsche 997 Gt3 of Romain Delhez & Gérome Bollette.

Sunday saw a damp start but as the day progressed the stages dried up and Cherain put in a charge taking 6 of the days 8 stages. It was not enough however as Fernémont held on to take victory by just 3s from Cherain. Bedoret took 3rd in an equally tense battle for the podium places, pipping de Mevius by just 5.4s. Bouche completed the top 5 as R5’s locked out the top 12 places in the rally with just under 4 minutes separating the top 10, after just under 200kms of competition.

In the 2WD battle Gaban lost a wheel on the opening stage of Sunday and retired from the rally. Delhez pushed through to 13th overall and took victory from Hermann by just 23s. Completing the 2WD podium were the 1st R2 crew home Grégoire Munster & Louis Louka (Adam R2).

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