25 Apr 08
The wrc.com camera crew drove through each of the Jordan rally stages before the event started this morning. Here's what they said about each of Friday's stages:
SS1/5 - Suwayman - 11.03km
A very fast stage to begin the event with. There's a water splash right at the start line but after that it's mostly flat with a hard surface and not much gravel to clear. It's almost like an asphalt road. In fact, there are a few short asphalt sections including one flat out dead straight sprint for 1.2km just before the finish. The cars will be hitting top speed there. There are lots of corners to cut so the cars further down the order might face some big rocks that have been dragged out onto the road.
SS2/6 - Mahes - 20.00km
This is the second longest stage of the rally and has some very big drops by the roadside in places. It starts tight and twisty along a high ridge with lots of gravel on the hard-packed surface. The narrow road snakes along the side of the hill with big drop on the right. After about 4km it drops downhill, with lots of tight, cambered corners until it reaches the bottom of the valley at the about the midpoint. From there on it's an undulating piece of road that is open and quick along the top of a ridge line. Sometimes it's uphill, sometimes downhill but there's always lots of gravel so it could be slippery. The stage ends alongside a huge dam.
SS3/7 - Mount Nebo - 11.10km
The road starts twisty and fast with a short downhill sequence of hairpins before crossing a concrete bridge with a harsh compression. From there it gets faster, with good grip and lots of good cuts to help the cars stay on the road at top speed. There are a couple of blind crests at 2.4km and 4.6km. From 7km there's a tight twisty downhill section and a lot more gravel on the road and some big rocks on the outside of the corners. There's a quarry nearby and a lot of sand has been carried onto the stage surface. From the 7km point to the end the road is fast and scary - the road runs along the side of a hill with a big drop into a gorge on the right-hand side. It's flowing and fast the whole way to the end.
SS4/8 - Mai'n - 13.46km
Most of this stage is fast, wide and open with a hard surface. The first half is particularly fast; the road flows well with only a few crests and blind bends along the way. The cars will get close to top speed here. After a straight section at the 9km point the road narrows and goes steeply uphill, there with lots of gravel on the surface and big drops on the left-hand side.