Europe South Asia Asia Pacific Americas Middle East Africa BBC Homepage World Service Education



Front Page

World

UK

UK Politics

Business

Sci/Tech

Health

Education

Sport

Entertainment

Talking Point
On Air
Feedback
Low Graphics
Help

Tuesday, November 24, 1998 Published at 14:18 GMT


Sport

Burns wins but Sainz goes down in flames

Richard Burns (right) celebrates with co-driver Robert Reid


Jonathan Legard reports on a thrilling finish in Cheltenham (Radio 5 Live)
Home star Richard Burns roared to victory in the Network Q Rally of Great Britain - but his triumph was overshadowed by a dramatic climax to the world championship.

Spaniard Carlos Sainz, who only had to finish in the top four to overtake Tommi Makinen and clinch the title, looked to be coasting to the crown on the final stage of the event.


Watch Carlos Sainz's dramatic flaming finish
But in a heart-breaking finale, his Toyota Corolla burst into flames just 300m from the finish line in Cheltenham.


Makinen reveals he heard of his triumph on the family grapevine (Radio 5 Live)
With Sainz unable to complete the course Makinen - whose own title chances looked to have been scuppered when he retired after spinning off on Sunday - secured a record third world championship in a row.

Burns in seventh heaven

Oxfordshire driver Burns won the rally in his Mitsubishi with a clean sweep of all seven stages on the final day.


[ image: Sainz cruises along before his untimely mishap]
Sainz cruises along before his untimely mishap
He finished 3mins 46secs clear of Juha Kankkunen of Finland, with Belgian driver Bruno Thiry in third place.

It was a day of double delight for Mitsubishi - the team behind both Burns' and Makinen's victories.

But team boss Andrew Cowan was in humble mood: "I've been in rallying for 30 years but I've never known an occasion like this," he said.

"I feel very sorry for Carlos and the Toyota team - they must be devastated."

Lady luck shines on Makinen

Burns was delighted with his home success: "It's gone superbly today," he said.


Richard Burns gives his reaction (BBC Radio 5 Live)
"We had a couple of little problems but nothing that gave us any major heartaches or cause for concern. We had a big gap and it's fantastic to get through.

"And Tommi (Makinen) must be so happy. It's a just reward for what happened to him on the first day, which was very unfair. There will be an even bigger party tonight!"

Sainz though was simply inconsolable after his last-gasp retirement. "The engine blew. It couldn't have been a worse end," was all he could say.

More dismay for McRaes

Earlier, there had been more bad news for the McRae family when Alister followed brother Colin out of the event on stage 22, when holding second place.

The younger McRae, 27, had problems with his fog lights and had to drive the stage virtually blind in pitch dark.

He went off in his Subaru one and a half miles from the end of the St Gwynno section, but he and co-driver David Senior escaped without injury.

Result after 28 stages:

  • 1 R Burns (GB) Mitsubishi 3 hrs 50 mins 30.6 secs
  • 2 J Kankkunen (Finland) Ford 3:54:17.1
  • 3 B Thiry (Belgium) Ford 3:54.58.1
  • 4 G de Mevius (Belgium) Subaru 3:58:25.4
  • 5 S Lindholm (Finland) Ford 3:58:46.2
  • 6 H Rovanpera (Finland) Seat 4:00:03.9
  • 7 A Schwarz (Germany) Ford 4:02:47.3
  • 8 K Holowczyc (Poland) Subaru 4:03:37.3
  • 9 M Martin (Estonia) Toyota 4:07:41.6
  • 10 M Stohl (Austria) Mitsubishi 4:09:37.8



    Advanced options | Search tips




    Back to top | BBC News Home | BBC Homepage | ©


  • Sport Contents


    Relevant Stories

    23 Nov 98 | Sport
    McRae forced out of rally

    22 Nov 98 | Sport
    McRae moves ahead in UK rally





    Internet Links


    Official Rally site

    The Richard Burns homepage


    The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites.




    In this section

    Collins calls it a day for Scots

    Quins fightback shocks Cardiff

    Christie could get two-year ban

    From Health
    Footballers 'receive poor medical care'

    Plucky England hang around

    Derby double swoop fails

    European Cup starts with a bang

    Spain maintain narrow lead

    From Special Report
    Keegan accused over late night

    The next Battle of Britain

    McIlroy tipped for NI role

    Saqlain stars in Aussie collapse

    White Rose rivals meet again

    Keane talks to resume

    League to rule on Sky shares

    From Special Report
    We'll be back for World Cup - Brown

    From Special Report
    Cheers and tears for Scotland

    From Special Report
    Keegan insists England can triumph

    Solanki breathes life into draw

    From Special Report
    I've rarely seen anything worse

    From Special Report
    An almost unbelievable turnaround

    Milestone for McGrath against Pakistan

    Faldo's caddie dumps her bag

    Irish to appeal after brawl

    British Rally route and maps