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Henri Toivonen drove 1.18 at Estoril?

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#1 Klem

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Posted 30 August 2004 - 07:32

Some on some rallying webpages there is a claim that Toivonen in his group B Lancia S4 drove as fast as F1 cars....his fastest lap was 1.18.1.
That would qualifed him on 6th position at Estoril 1986 race. Or at least this is myth writen on many webpages about Group B cars. But all the facts are talking against it. F1 cars that year were extremely fast (pole in Monza was 1.24.0 which 1.5 sec faster than pole in 98, even though track modifacations made Monza in 98 a bit slower,its still unbeliveable)

Some facts

Average speed of Ayrton Senna pole time was 205km/h(127mph) which is very near the top speed of rally cars.
Power to weight ratio in F1 was 1200hp/600kg Lancia S4 only 500hp/800kg
F1 has lower point of gravity
Lancia S1 is allrounder able to drive both gravel and tarmac roads and has to be compromised,while F1 has only one purpuse
Estoril in 1986 had only one really slower corner where RWD formula could stuggle with thier traction and Lancia might have an advantage...all other corners were taken at 120km/h or even faster

What do you think...


#2 JB Miltonian

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Posted 30 August 2004 - 17:27

Quote from "Rallyworld" 1986/87, from their coverage of the 1986 Rally of Portugal:

"Picking a winner was difficult, near impossible, but Henri Toivonen was one of the favorites. Still on a high and enjoying it all so much, he relaxed one evening by taking Grand Prix driver Jonathan Palmer on a few laps of the Estoril track in his Delta S4. In pouring rain, and at night, the Finn startled Palmer somewhat with the sheer performance of the racer, some unofficial estimates suggesting that the lap times would have had them somewhere on the front half of the grid for the 'wet' 1985 Portuguese Formula One race."

Senna's pole in the rain in 1985 was 1.21.007
Senna's pole in the dry in 1986 was 1.16.673

#3 FrankB

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Posted 30 August 2004 - 17:33

This has been discussed before - try Search BB

http://forums.atlasf...ril#post1016774 post # 12 for instance

#4 BRG

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Posted 31 August 2004 - 10:05

There have been several threads about this - here is another one http://forums.atlasf...t=Estoril rally

There was also one on this specific claim, but I can't locate it. But basically the conclusion was that
Gp B rally cars:-

a) didn't have as much power
b) weighed more
c) had a much higher coefficient of drag
d) had a higher centre of gravity
e) had very little downforce, &
f) had a lot less rubber on the road

than F1 cars. Driver skills were relatively similar so the 4WD was the only positive advantage for the GpB cars.

Hence the claim was highly unlikely to have any merit and was probably a combination of Chinese whispers and extrapolation..

#5 JB Miltonian

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Posted 31 August 2004 - 17:27

I may have been misleading in my earlier post. In 1985, Senna's pole time at Estoril was done in the dry, at 1.21.007. His fastest race lap, in heavy rain, was 1.44.121. I don't know where and when Toivonen's time of 1.18.1 was supposed to have been recorded, but I don't believe for a moment that it was on the same track in similar conditions as Senna's times.

I would be willing to believe, however, that Toivonen in the S4 could have competed fairly evenly with Senna in the Lotus during the heavy rains of the 1985 Estoril race. But it's pure speculation.