Barcelona will again host a spectacular street special stage to launch Spain’s RallyRACC Catalunya-Costa Daurada (22 - 25 October) as it celebrates its 25th anniversary as a round of the WRC.
The city’s famous Montjuic hill, former home to the Spanish Grand Prix, hosts a repeat of the 3.20km test that was initially run last season. It is the curtain-raiser to a much revised route for the championship’s only mixed surface encounter.
Seven new stages feature in an itinerary containing 23 tests and 331.51 timed kilometres, up from 17 in 2014. The rally follows a similar format to last year with an opening leg of gravel and mixed surface stages and two all-asphalt days to conclude the penultimate round.
Salou’s PortAventura theme park is again the rally base and hosts Thursday lunchtime’s start, after which competitors journey to Barcelona for the evening asphalt test.
Only the 35.69km Terra Alta mixed surface stage is retained from 2014 in Friday’s opening leg. The other three tests, all on gravel, are new or heavily revised and there is no mid-leg service to ensure endurance will be a key factor over the 128.60km of action.
Saturday contains five different stages, three of which are driven twice, and the leg ends with the traditional test along Salou seafront.
Sunday’s finale offers three stages driven twice to total 76.40km, ending with the Duesaigues live TV Power Stage with bonus points for the fastest three drivers. There will be no mid-leg service or tyre change opportunity.