The 27th Asia Cross Country Rally, the toughest rally in Asia, is back with a 1700+ km track, starting from Thailand to the finish line in Cambodia this November 21-26.

Leg 4

SS5 changed by the organizer at the last minute
80 km of mainly high-speed flat dirt road using 1st half of SS3
Team Mitsubishi RALLIART maintains its top and 4th positions

The rally entered its fifth day. SS5 was originally scheduled as a stage of over 90 km near the border with Cambodia, but the course was changed the night before to an 80 km course from the starting point of SS3. The course consisted mainly of flat dirt at high speeds exceeding 100km/h, with a mix of gravel and tarmac roads.
Chayapon Yotha, who keeps the overall lead with Team Mitsubishi RALLIART's car #105 TRITON, had maintained a time gap of over 7 minutes to the 2nd place overall driver. He played it safe with his usual, calm driving style, and the official time was 56 min 40 sec, placing him 5th in SS5. He continues to lead the overall standings, with an 8 min 15 sec time gap between himself and the 2nd place overall rival, car #102 Toyota Hilux Revo.

Despite suffering from a flat tire in SS2 on the second day of the competition, Rifat Sungkar in car #118, who had steadily moved up from 8th to 4th overall position, prioritized focusing on a solid finish to the final day rather than aiming for the fastest time. "The Triton handles well and the engine is very responsive, so I was able to drive as I wanted on the rough roads and achieve a satisfactory result," said Rifat, who finished 4th in SS5 with an official time of 56 min 15 sec. His overall ranking remains unchanged at 4th place overall.

"Tomorrow will be the final stage of this rally, and although the SS is short at just under 50 km, we are expecting a tough road surface with deep ruts, potholes, and large water holes," said team director Hiroshi Masuoka. "Chayapon took the lead on the second day and has maintained his lead with stable driving. The TRITON handles well and is easy to drive, so I think it will show its true potential on the rougher roads. Tomorrow, I expect the team to stay focused and cross the finish line. This is truly a critical point for the team."

Chayapon, the overall leader, has an advantage of more than eight minutes over the rest of the rivals, and he will need to make it to the finish line with the TRITON in a solid manner. On the other hand, with rivals closely behind Rifat in 4th place overall, tomorrow's stage will be a tense race for the podium.