Home rally for Dakar winner Joan “Nani” Roma.MINI and the Monster Energy X-raid team are ready to take on the next challenge in the FIA World Cup for Cross Country Rallies. The sixth round of the season, the Baja Aragón, takes place from 18th to 20th July. X-raid will field six MINI ALL4 Racings. Among those in action will be Dakar winner Joan “Nani” Roma/Michel Perin (ES/FR) and Vladimir Vasilyev/Konstantin Zhiltsov (RU/RU), who currently leads the World Cup standings.
Nani Roma has won the Baja Aragón in the northeast of Spain on three occasions in the past, most recently in 2013 at the wheel of the MINI ALL4 Racing, with which he also triumphed at the legendary Rally Dakar in January this year. “Contesting a home race always is something very special”, says Roma. “The 2009 Baja Spain was the first rally I did for X-raid – and I won it right away. Last year, it also was a trouble-free event, for me. Now I’m coming home with the Dakar win and it goes without saying that I once again want to win.”
The Baja Aragón was held for the first time in 1983 in the Aragon region, about 250 km east of the Spanish capital Madrid. The competitors face a total of 666.13 kilometres against the clock between Teruel and Calatayud. Four special stages must be completed over the course of the three days. Unlike the previous two races, the Baja Aragón does not take place in the desert. However, conditions in Spain are similarly tough and demanding. The gravel routes are extremely dusty and temperatures can soar to above 30 degrees at this time of year.
The MINI ALL4 Racing has proven on several occasions this year that it is capable of performing well in these challenging conditions. The four-wheel drive powerhouse crossed the finish line first in the deserts of Qatar and Abu Dhabi, emphatically proving its speed and reliability in the process.
Roma, who has won his home World Cup event twice in 2009 and 2013, and World Cup leader Vasilyev will be joined by a further four MINI ALL4 Racings at the start of the Baja Aragón. Erik van Loon/Wouter Rosegaar (NL/NL) will line up at the rally, as will Martin Kaczmarski (PL), who has a new co-driver at his side in Tappio Suominen (FI). Orlando Terranova/Moi Torrallardona (AR/ES), making his first appearance since the Rally Dakar, and Aidyn Rakhimbayev/Moi Torrallardona (KZ/ES) will be behind the wheel of the remaining two MINI ALL4 Racings.
MINI driver line-up at the 2014 Baja Aragón.
#1 MINI ALL4 Racing.X-raid TeamVladimir Vasilyev/Konstantin Zhiltsov (RU/RU)#4 MINI ALL4 Racing.X-raid TeamNani Roma/Michel Perin (ES/FR)#8 MINI ALL4 Racing.X-raid TeamErik van Loon/Wouter Rosegaar (NL/NL)
#9 MINI ALL4 Racing.X-raid TeamMartin Kaczmarski/Tappio Suominen (PL/FI)
#10 MINI ALL4 Racing.X-raid TeamOrlando Terranova/Moi Torrallardona (AR/ES)#16 MINI ALL4 Racing.X-raid TeamAidyn Rakhimbayev/Moi Torrallardona (KZ/ES)
Race calendar: FIA World Cup for Cross Country Rallies.14/02 – 16/02 Baja Russia13/03 – 16/03 Baja Italy06/04 – 10/04 Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge20/04 – 25/04 Sealine Cross-Country Rally Qatar18/05 – 25/05 Pharaons Rally Egypt18/07 – 20/07 Baja Aragón14/08 – 17/08 Baja Hungary28/08 – 30/08 Baja Poland03/10 – 09/10 Rally Morocco30/10 – 02/11 Baja Portugal