Domínguez celebrates in the WRC3

20 maio 2024

Paraguay's Diego Domínguez, accompanied by Rogelio Peñate, took part in the Vodafone Rally de Portugal for the first time and won his first WRC3 event this season, driving the Ford Fiesta Rally3.

In a rally that saw six changes of leader, Diego Domínguez's consistency paid off and the 24-year-old Paraguayan had a Vodafone Rally de Portugal to remember. On his debut at the ACP event, Domínguez took his first WRC3 victory this year, leaving Frenchman Mattéo Chatillon, in a Renault Clio Rally3, 48.9s behind.

Chatillon was the one who set the pace during the first stages, until a one-minute penalty for early entry into control before stage 4 knocked him out of the lead. His compatriot Tom Pieri, also in a Clio Rally3, then moved into the lead, but overturned on the second pass through Góis (SS7) and abandoned prematurely.

From then on, the fight for first place was a South American tussle, at least until Bolivia's Bruno Bulacia was irreparably delayed by a puncture (SS16), leaving Diego Domínguez with a clear path to confirm his fifth triumph in the category. The Paraguayan entered the final day with a lead of almost two minutes over his rivals, and he simply managed to manage the advantage in the final four stages.

After Friday's penalty, the young Chatillon (22) still managed to recover to second, amassing an impressive record of nine stage wins

With Bruno Bulacia rounding off the category podium, fourth place was enough for Czech Jan Cerný to climb to second place in the Rally3 World Championship standings, six points behind Romet Jürgenson, who didn't compete in Portugal.

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