Rallye de France-Alsace
|Rallye de France-Alsace|
|Stages:||18 (303.63 km)|
- Historic Strasbourg, nestled on the German border between the Vosges mountains and the Black Forest, is the hub for a fifth year.
- It is the shortest round of the season with just over 300km of stages. The opening leg visits the Bas-Rhin and Vosges mountains while the second day journeys further south into the Haut Rhin, with remote service in Colmar.
- Sunday is based around the town of Saverne, replacing the traditional final day’s action around Sébastien Loeb’s home town of Haguenau.
- The Strabourg city stage, which ends outside the European Parliament, has been moved back 24 hours from Thursday to Friday evening.
- Inconsistent roads traverse both narrow and fast sections.
- Cold temperatures and rain likely, creating plenty of tyre choice dilemmas.
- Working efficiently with safety note crews, who drive the stages ahead of competitors, to have up-to-date information about road surface and weather.
- Vineyard stages are wider than those used in Rallye Deutschland.
- Speeds top 200kph on undulating forests roads, steep climbs and long corners in the Vosges mountains.
- Asphalt suspension but set-up is a compromise for different types of roads in the same group of stages.
- Hard compound rubber available for warm and dry conditions, with soft option for wet or cold weather. Roads are not abrasive so tyre wear is not an issue.
- France’s WRC round was held on the stunning island of Corsica from 1973 to 2008.
- After a year’s absence due to rotation, the rally moved to Alsace in 2010.
- Alsace is Sébastien Loeb country and he secured his seventh world title at the end of a street stage through his home town of Haguenau that year.
- Loeb’s final WRC event was here last year. Even the great Frenchman shed a tear.
What’s new for 2014
- Almost half the stage distance has never been used before.
- A completely revised street test in Mulhouse ends Saturday’s action.
- Sunday – everything is new for 2014.
- Visit Strasbourg’s Zénith arena where the service park is based. It’s the best of the year with loads to see, loads to do and a buzzing atmosphere.
- Remember Petter Solberg’s trip through the vines in 2012? Take another look: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i5m_qi4HVKc