WT’09, Leg 4 Nightloop, Ceske Bodejovice: Snow
The night loop was an organizers dream. The snow started really hard now and nobody cleaned even the very first of the 17 timing points. As usual a few cars did not stay on the road, first off was Michel Perridon. The Breedveld brothers had a coming together with a tree and the leaders Harm Lamberigts went off completely. Damage was a mere 40 minutes. So they dropped to the 8th place, which means that all top teams lost massive amounts of time. The new leader board shows Fennell Savage first, Van Lennep/ Berkhof second and Bert Meulenbeld / Bart den Hartogh on third place.
WT’09, Leg 5 Ceske Bodejovice – Maribor: Snow, snow, snow …
Snow, snow, snow was the credo of today. With here and there some old ice under it. The truck that is carrying all the courtesy cars has to put snow chain on to make it over the normal routes. That tells something about the difficulty that the competitors have to worry about. The truck only arrived at the overnight hotel at 5 o clock in the morning. “This was the best day rallying ever!” is what the competitors told the organizers. Great to hear this of course. I think that the pictures tell more than words today. Bad luck for the BMW of Ton Mijs. The exhaust came of just after the start of the regularity so they had to wait for the service crew to fix it. The difficulty was that the Altena service crew could only come into the regularity after the last car had started. On the last regularity of the day, crews were instructed to use chains on the downhill bit after the actual finish. Of course quite a few ignored this and slit of the piste as if they were bobsleighing. On top of that it is essential to put the chains on the front wheels when you are descending.
WT’09, Leg 6 Maribor – Bled: Powder snow
We thought that the rally had started yesterday, but the roads we are driving today are more than a rallymans dream.
Powder snow, big snow walls and a bit of sunshine. Harm Lambrechts, in 8th position after his off, was very eager to gain back a bit of what was lost. Over concentrated Arthur Denzler the navigator misread the route instructions completely and scored maximum penalty on the second regularity. Rival Frank Fennell, still leading but losing time, miss slotted various times as well and also scored max penalties. Hans Buurman leading the Club Category was not the fastest going through the narrow snow lanes and was blocking some 6 cars behind him. Navigation in the afternoon proved to be extremely difficult with again lots of changes in the results. Jan Berkhof proves his skills and unofficially we think he and Gijs van Lennep are leading the event. Big losers again today are father and sun Maassen, the car gives up again, so the leading team of TEAM Buurman does not seem to be in danger. The night loop, in most years is the decider of the event. We will see how it goes. The conditions are ideal, snow, asphalt and gravel on challenging roads!