Neste Rally Finland

Info

Neste Rally Finland
Start Date: 27.07.2017
End Date: 30.07.2017
Timezone: UTC 2
Category: WRC3
WRC2
WRC
JWRC
Stages: 25 (315,63 km)
Distance: 1.422,34 km
Servicepark: JYVÄSKYLÄ
Website: http://www.nesterallyfinland.fi

Route

  • Smooth and blisteringly fast gravel roads, buried among Finland’s forests and lakes, are characterised by massive jumps. 
  • University town of Jyväskylä is the hub of everything and Paviljonki service park in the centre draws huge crowds. 
  • Rally starts on Thursday evening with Harju street stage in the town. 
  • Friday is a marathon with almost 16 hours at the wheel. Drivers head west for favourites such as Jukojärvi and Urria, before turning east to classics including Laukaa and Lankamaa. 
  • Saturday routes competitors south to Jämsä and the legendary Ouninpohja – Finland’s signature stage. Same tests as 2016, but mostly driven in the opposite direction. 
  • Sunday’s finale is a carbon copy of last year, heading south of Jyväskylä and east of Lake Päijänne.

Challenge

  • A mix of hard, wide roads with narrower more technical sections.
  • Flat out from start to finish. It is affectionately known as the Finnish Grand Prix and nine of the 10 fastest WRC rallies have been here.
  • Pace notes must be perfect. Blind crests often hide corners and it’s vital to position the car correctly before take-off to ensure maximum speed through the bend.
  • Speeds are so high that time differences are small and there is little opportunity to regain time after a mistake.
  • One of the hardest rallies for co-drivers as high speeds demand a constant, pinpoint accurate delivery of pace notes.
  • Mastering the jumps. If the speed is too high, the car’s aerodynamics will force the back down and the front will rise. The tactic is to brake before take-off and accelerate full throttle over the jump.  
Car spec
  • Gravel suspension.
  • Packed gravel roads mean soft compound tyres are the usual choice, but hard compound rubber is also available.
  • Super-smooth stages mean cars can be prepared in the knowledge that mechanical issues are rare.

History

  • Dates back to 1951 when it was launched as a means of deciding the Finnish entries for Rallye Monte-Carlo.
  • It took on the name 1000 Lakes Rally and was included in the calendar for the WRC in its first year in 1973. 
  • It has been dominated by Finnish drivers who have won 54 of the 66 editions. Top of the roll of honour are Hannu Mikkola and Marcus Grönholm with seven wins. 
  • The 2016 edition was the fastest rally in WRC history. Kris Meeke won at an average speed of 126.62kph.

What’s new for 2017

  • Ouninpohja, Finland’s jewel in the crown, will be driven in its traditional direction, after being reversed in 2016. 
  • Saturday’s Pihlajakoski test will be driven in this shape for the first time ever.

Don’t miss

  • The party atmosphere. Jyväskylä is the ultimate rally town and no visit would be complete without a night out in one of the many bars in the main street. Drinks are not cheap though...
  • Ouninpohja. Get up early and spend Saturday here, either at one of the many roller-coaster jumps or at the Kakaristo hairpin to enjoy great action and a brilliant atmosphere.

PHOTOS



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