Rallying: Makkinen makes way for McRae

Click to follow
The Independent Online

Makkinen makes way for McRae

Colin McRae edged out Finland's world champion Tommi Makinen to make a flying start to the Rally of New Zealand in Auckland. McRae, driving a Subaru, and Makinen, in a Mitsubishi, were the last on the track for the special head-to-head stage, which pitted seeded pairs of drivers against each other on the muddy figure-of-eight track. The pair drove in a clean style, instead of the big sideways slides used by some other drivers, and McRae won by two seconds. Makinen equalled the time of one minute, 35 seconds posted a few minutes earlier by compatriot Juha Kankkunen and Denis Eriksson of Sweden. The trio share second place but Eriksson is in doubt for today's first full stage because of a gearbox problem with his Subaru. Mark Higgins, born in the Isle of Man but now based in Wales, won the Ulster Rally in a Nissan Sunny.