Mon 16 Jan 2023

Monte-Carlo countdown: Route + Maps

The only predictable aspect of this week’s season-opening Rallye Monte-Carlo (19 – 22 January) is that it will be the most unpredictable rally of the year.

Relatively straight-forward asphalt speed tests in the French Alps are complicated by winter weather which places an emphasis on cunning tyre choices, the skill to drive slowly on snow and ice as fast as possible – and a huge slice of luck!

After Thursday evening’s start in Monaco’s famous Casino Square, an opening night based around the atmospheric Col de Turini in the Alpes-Maritimes mountains lies in wait.

The well-known La Bollène-Vésubie / Col de Turini (15.12km) and La Cabanette / Col de Castillon (24.90km) are driven in darkness. They add up to 40.02km before drivers descend the mountains for service alongside the Principality’s picturesque harbour.

What a way to start the new season – especially as the latter also doubles up as the longest stage of the four-day fixture…

Friday heads further north for two loops of three stages covering 105.34km. Morning and afternoon runs through Roure / Roubion / Beuil (18.33km), Puget-Théniers / Saint-Antonin (19.79km) and Briançonnet / Entrevaux (14.55km) are on the schedule.

To make matters even more difficult, once the cars leave the comfort of Monaco’s rally base on Friday morning, there will be no service until they return just before 1900hrs that evening. It means the drivers must make do with a tyre change only in Puget-Théniers between loops.

The action switches west to the Alpes-de-Haute-Provence on Saturday for another 111.78km of competition.

Le Fugeret / Thorame-Haute (16.80km), Malijai / Puimichel (17.31km) and Ubraye / Entrevaux (21.78km) each run twice either side of another tyre fitting zone in Puget-Théniers. Again, there is no mid-leg service.

Rally Route: WRC Rallye Monte-Carlo 2023

Sunday’s finale returns to the Alpes-Maritimes. The familiar Luceram / Lantosque (18.82km) opens proceedings and is followed by a re-run of La Bollène-Vésubie / Col de Turini, which crews will have already driven in anger on Thursday evening.

Both stages are repeated once again with the latter forming the Wolf Power Stage where bonus points are available. The final four tests add up to 67.88km.

The survivors return to Monaco for the Casino Square champagne celebrations on Sunday afternoon after 18 stages covering 325.02km.

  • Full coverage from Rallye Monte-Carlo will be available on WRC+ All Live here, including every stage broadcast as it happens as well as key interviews, features and expert analysis from the service park.
Starts: Thursday, July 18, 2024 at 4:31:00 AM
Starts: Friday, July 26, 2024 at 7:00:00 AM
Starts: Saturday, July 27, 2024 at 6:00:00 AM