A Year, A Picture: Tour de Corse 1979
Bernard Darniche and Alain Mahé at Tour de Corse 1979 © DPPI

A Year, A Picture: Tour de Corse 1979

14/11/2013

Marked by a substantial extension of the number of kilometers, the 1979 edition is the longest in the history of the Tour de Corse. Bernard Darniche improves his victory record by winning for the fifth time.

The 1979 Tour de Corse is an hecatomb: from more than a hundred and ten crews at the start, only a dozen reach the finish line. All because of the layout which has doubled compared to the previous edition: more than 2 000 kilometers, half of it being special stages! That year, foreign entrants are quite rare, the number of kilometers having scared more than one.

Bernard Béguin, one of the best in the French Rally Championship (who will actually be crowned a few weeks later), takes the lead after the SS1. But a mechanical problem forces him to retire while Bernard Darniche takes over, and quickly increases his advance. Despite all their efforts, Jean Ragnotti, Michèle Mouton and their associates cannot prevent him from triumphing after a two thousand kilometer race.

The four-time winner of the Tour de Corse seizes a fifth victory on the French island, the third consecutive and the fourth within the World Rally Championship. The rest of the Top 10 is mainly constituted by French crews, while the final podium of this 1979 Tour de Corse stars:

  1. Bernard Darniche – Alain Mahé (Lancia Stratos HF)
  2. Jean Ragnotti – Jean-Marc Andrié (Renault 5 Alpine)
  3. Pierre-Louis Moreau – Patrice Baron (Porsche 911 SC)

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