Motor rallying -- and Finland's Markku Alen, driving a Lancia Stratos, was leading the Lombard-RAC rally after the second day's stage, which ended on Monday (20 November).
GV PAN Lombard RAC rally starting position
SV PAN Car number 1 driven by Bjorn Waldegaard of Sweden leaves start
SV PAN car number 2 driven by Sweden's Stig Blomqvist starts
SV PAN car number 3 driven by Markku Alen of Finland starts
SV car number 4 driven by Finland's - Hannu Mikkola leaves starting position
SV PAN car number 5 driven by Walter Rohrl of West Germany leaves starting position and joins local traffic
GV PAN from trees to car number 93 driven by Britain's Paul Birch driving down dirt track
GV PAN cars along dirt track (2 SHOTS)
GV night scene stage finish in Teeside
GV AND SV cars arriving and being checked-off (3 SHOTS)
SPORT: MOTOR RALLYING
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Background: Motor rallying -- and Finland's Markku Alen, driving a Lancia Stratos, was leading the Lombard-RAC rally after the second day's stage, which ended on Monday (20 November). In second place -- just forty-five seconds behind -- was his fellow countryman, Hannu Mikkola, driving a Ford Escort. In third place maintaining a strong challenge on the Ford team -- who have won the event for the past six years -- was a Fiat one-three-one, driven by Walter Rohrl of West Germany.
SYNOPSIS: With weather conditions much improved overnight, last year's winner Bjorn Waldegaard of Sweden -- driving a Ford Escort -- was first away. He was followed by his compatriot Stig Blomqvist, in a Saab Turbo. Third to leave was the current leader, Markku Alen.
Striving to eat away Alen's narrow lead from the first day -- car number four, driven by Hannu Mikkola. He began this stage seconds behind the Fiat driven by Walter Rohrl of West Germany, but later overtook him to take second place.
The second day's driving through forest sections was to prove much tougher than the opening day, which brought relatively fast stages.
The rough, wood-strewn route was to take its toll on the suspensions and engine mountings, forcing fast and desperate repair work for the unluckier entrants. Tough as these sections were, they brought relatively gentle motoring compared to some of the toughest sections still to come in Scotland.
After more than ten hours driving, a compulsory two-hour check-stop at Teeside airport, near Middlesborough. Here, officials confirmed that Alen's Lancia had maintained its lead over Mikkola's Ford Escort, with Rohrl's Fiat third. But, with the bleak Scottish sections still to come, it remained to be seen whether Alen's Lancia Stratos, the world's fastest rally car, was also the most durable. On such a testing course, the result remained wide open.