Night action will return to this year’s Dayinsure Wales Rally GB (26 - 29 October) when a marathon second leg features two forest speed tests in the dark.
After a tough Saturday in the forests of mid-Wales, competitors head out into the darkness for more than 30km of competition to close a daunting 17-hour leg which will test competitors’ endurance to the maximum.
The penultimate round of the WRC season offers 20 special stages covering 306.13km, featuring all the classic tests long associated with the fixture.
Deeside again hosts the service park and Friday’s opening leg journeys south for the Myherin, Sweet Lamb and Hafren stages. All are driven twice, either side of a tyre fitting zone in Newtown, and there will be no service available until the evening.
After a 06.10 restart on Saturday, a double loop through the famous Dyfi and Gartheiniog stages in the Snowdonia mountains leads into Dyfnant, which has moved back from a Saturday slot in 2016.
The short fan-favourite Cholmondeley Castle test across the border in England (below) precedes a second pass through Dyfnant and the superfast Aberhirnant stages in darkness. Service ends the day with drivers turning off their engines at 23.21.
Sunday’s finale is entirely in north Wales. Two loops of three stages end with a revised version of the Brenig live TV Power Stage, which provides stunning views as it runs alongside the reservoir.
Rally managing director Ben Taylor said the spectacular new 2017 World Rally Cars would lead to even greater interest in one of the season’s most popular rounds.
“The arrival of a new generation of more exciting cars has really caught the public’s imagination and we are expecting them to draw even bigger crowds when they make their UK debut in the autumn.
“Having had such a great event in 2016, we have fabulous foundations for 2017. So we have stuck by the majority of the route but now with the added bonus of challenging night stages – always a big hit with both drivers and fans,” said Taylor.
You can see the full route here.