Bingo! Set Promotion surprises S1600 rivals with a Twingo

by Tim Whittington |

Pinomäki comes up with second generation Renault.

Perhaps the best kept secret of the winter was broken when Set Promotion revealed that it will run a Renault Twingo II for Super1600 title favourite Ildar Rakhmatullin in the 2011 ERC.

Set Promotion has built two new Twingos, one that it will run for Rakhmattulin, the other for a customer team that will run the car in the Russian championship for Rasul Minnikhanov. Set boss Jussi Pinomäki is pleased with the way in which the new car has progressed. “I’m very happy with it and way in which we have worked as a team to develop and build a new car over the winter,” he said, “This is the first car we have built as a pure Rallycross car; when we did the Clio before we had the starting point that it was already a very good rally car. We’ve used the knowledge and experience that we have from the Clio and carried over some parts but we’ve also added a lot of developments from the ideas that we had to make this a car built just for Rallycross.”

While there has been a Renault Twingo R2 rally car, this is the first example of the small Renault to be used in Rallycross and it will be a welcome addition to the Super1600 category. “The Clio is a very good car so we have a good base to work from, but also a high level to achieve to make the Twingo better. It’s been a very good exercise for us as a team and a company because it’s provided great motivation over the winter. We were able to start the build at the beginning of December because Ildar and Timur [Timerzyanov, who is involved with the team running the second car in Russia] were committed to the project very early. Of course I would have liked to go testing before we raced the car but there is still snow on the ground in Finland,” said Pinomäki. Rakhmatullin got his first run in the car in the opening round of the Dutch championship at the Eurocircuit in Valkenswaard on April 10, the Russian then moving on to France with the team for two days of testing.

Alongside Rakhmatullin’s Twingo, Set Promotion will run a Clio for Andreas Bakkerud in a full ERC programme as well as a mixed series of Finnish and ERC events for Jussi-Petteri Leppihalme. “The safest option for a driver is start with something proven so the Clio is a very good bet for Andreas. We have built things into the Twingo that we think will help us to work with the drivers, see what they are doing and help then to improve, but building the Twingo has also given us some improvements for the Clio so there are some new things in it that will make it a better car this year,” said Pinomäki.

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