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Previews of upcoming events, Race & Rally Reports, News, Reviews, Letters and Regulation Information from Historic Motor Racing News.

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Rally News

Alberto Salvini and Davide Tagliaferri took their Group 4 Porsche Carrera RS to victory in the XXXII Rallye Elba Storico-Trofeo Locman, run on its originally scheduled date of 17-19 September with a full entry list of over 130 cars.  The second round of the Italian Championship was this year, for the first time in many years, not to count towards the FIA Historic Sporting Rally Championship, but when the FIA finally cancelled the EHSRC in August, Elba benefitted with some last minute entries from the FIA competitors. 

Reigning FIA Group 4 Champions ‘Lucky’ and Fabrizia Pons fought hard, but came second

There were also categories for Sport Regularity and the Elba Graffiti regularity rally, the latter counting towards the Italian regularity championship.  The event incorporated  twelve A112 Abarth Trophy cars, racing amongst themselves for separate honours.  Despite all the COVID madness, there were 16 nationalities represented in the entry lists.

Alberto Salvini and Davide Tagliaferri took their Group 4 Porsche Carrera RS to victory  Photos Courtesy Rally Elba

After their victory in the first round of the Championship in Tuscany in July, reigning FIA Group 4 Champions ‘Lucky’ and Fabrizia Pons in their Lancia Delta Integrale were looking for another win, but although they led after the first stage of the last day, they were overhauled by Salvini three stages from the end and relegated to a  Group 4 winning second place.

Lucio da Zanche won the night prologue stage, and led the next day, but dropped out with a broken gearbox

The Elba Graffiti regularity event was won by father and son team Marco and Riccardo Leva, in their Alfa Romeo Giulia GT Veloce.

Read all about it in our November 2020 issue

 

 

In these difficult times the Tour de Corse Historique was a kind of beacon of normalcy, when a full complement of 210 cars, over 130 in competition (VHC) and the others split into regularity categories (VHRS) of high, medium and low average speed, took the start in Porto-Vecchio on 6 October for the 20th Tour de Corse Historique.  True, special health measures were in place, but the ambiance was as friendly as always and the Corsican roads were, well, the Corsican roads, and just as awe inspiring as ever. 

 

The entry list included many Tour de Corse heavy hitters, including past masters Alain Oreille (Porsche 911 RS 3.0), Marc Valliccioni (BMW M3 E30), François Delecour (Porsche 911 SC RS) and newcomer to the event, but certainly not to rallying, Robert Consani (Porsche 911 SC), who proved to be a bit of a revelation, coming in on day 1 with a 2-second overall lead ahead of Valliccioni, who was top in J2.  Alain Oreille sat in third place, and last year’s winner, François Foulon, driving a Ford Escort RS 1800, was equal sixth with Christophe Casanova in a BMW M3 after an errant brake cable slowed his progress.

On day two things changed dramatically.  Valliccioni left the road into retirement on the, and the same fate befell Consani on the last stage of the day.  The rally had lost the two leading cars.  The drivers arrived in Bastia with Alain Oreille as the new king with a 48-second advance on Capanaccia and Casanova, while Delecour was lying in wait in fourth place.

Alain and Sylvie Oreille drove to victory on their fourth attempt.  Photo Fred Chambert Courtesy TDCH 

The next twist of fate was to befall François Delecour, who had been caught speeding on the last liaison stage and had his licence withdrawn.  The officials had no choice but to exclude him from the start the following morning. 

The penultimate day of the rally went from Calvi to Ajaccio, this time with only three specials on the menu, but these included the daunting 30-kilometre Our Lady of the Serra and Liamone - Sant’Andria D’Orcino (29, 47 km).  Consani,, now running in super rally, was once again in the forefront, but Oreille was the fastest of those still in contention. 

David Perier drove his D-type evocation in the regularity section.  Photos François & Leo Haase

The fifth and final day took everyone back to Porto-Vecchio via four more stages, where Alain and Sylvie Oreille drove as winners for the first time, after four attempts.

 

In VHRS, Bernard Figuière/Isabelle Godin (BMW M3) won the high average speed category, Christophe and Anne Baillet (Porsche 911 SC) the medium intermediate, Serge Garosi/Jean Marc Piret (Mazda RX2) the medium moderate and Daniel Klumpp and Sylviane Dennu took their Mini to victory amongst the low average speed contenders.

Patrick Canavese starts his Lancia 037

Read More in the November 2020 issue…..

In another blow to historic rallying the planned Silver Fern Rally has been cancelled due to the on-going COVID-19 travel restrictions.  The marathon biennial event relies on entries from Europe to make it viable and with those now not possible the organisers had no option but to cancel the 2020 edition completely.  Plans to run a shorter two-day event for local crews have now also been shelved.

 

Since 1999 Viviane Zaniroli has been encouraging women to get behind the wheel of old sports and GT cars and compete in their own right.  The resulting Rallye des Princesses regularity rally, inspired on the old Paris – Saint-Raphaël  Féminin, has been a great success over the ensuing 20 years, bringing many women into competition as drivers that might not have had the chance in mixed rallies when there is only one eligible car in the house.  A number have since bought their own rally cars.  Zaniroli has created an event tailored to women’s interests, in the route, in the places visited and in the evening stops.  For some years now, she has been supported by the high end watchmaker, Richard Mille.  Mille is well-known in racing circles for his sponsorship of the Peter Auto run Le Mans Classic, Rallye des Legendes and Chantilly Art et Elegance, and also for his large collection of racing cars, which he exhibits at Retromobile each year.

Now Zaniroli would like to step back and she will be handing the baton over to Patrick Peter’s organisation, which will observe and handle media and some other aspects in 2021 and take over the running of the event in 2022.  Next year’s event is scheduled for 29 May- 3 June 2021.  Zaniroli Classic Events, which Viviane runs with her Husband Patrick, will continue to run all its other annual events as usual, including Neige et Glace, Trans Maroc and Trophée des Alpes.

Though some things have changed much will be the same on next year’s Historic Monte, which takes place on 30 January – 3 February.  Though organisers have foregone the multi-national starting points in 2021 after the trauma of this year’s COVID epidemic, the challenge will be as tough as ever for four days and one night loop, returning cars to the unique starting point of Monte-Carlo after three nights in Valence and many historic regularity stages.  The final night run in the arrière pays that will include stages such as Col de Braus – La-Bollène-Vésubie and Lantosque – Lucéram will sort out the final order.

The organisers have also widened the eligibility criteria, now allowing any car that took part in the Monte between 1911 and 1983, making cars such as the Audi Quattro, Renault 5 Turbo, Lancia 037 and Fiat Panda eligible, at one end of the spectrum, and pre-war cars such as Bugatti, Delahaye, Talbot and Invicta at the other.  Another change to the regulations is that cars will run to only two average speeds.

Though this is likely to result in some newer cars entering the event for the first time, it seems unlikely that many pre-war cars will be attracted, as all cars built before 1966 are to be lumped into a single category, with further category cut off dates falling at the end of 1971, 1976 and 1982.  Entries must be in by 9 November and can be made on the ACM web site.

Lucy O’Reilly-Schell nished the Monte ve mes between 1929 and 1936, her best result being second place in 1936. In 1930 she drove a Talbot 2600, which has now become eligible for the historic Monte. She later became a Grand Prix team owner and was the mother of Grand Prix driver Harry Schell

Bumper entries mark the resumption of the French rally season

Rallye de la Châtaigne

After the long break between the Touquet Pas-de-Calais rally in March, and the second round of the French Historic Rally Championship, the Rallye de la Châtaigne finally got under way on 19-21 August.  The 2020 edition offered a concentrated route with more than 160 special stage kilometres with the city of Autun, in Bourgogne-Franche-Comté, as its hub.  A record attendance of 171 competitors in modern cars, 57 in VHC and 22 in historic regularity, with waiting lists, welcomed the return of the French Rally Championship.  Competitors praised the organisers for their forethought in ensuring the safety of all the participants and spectators in the light of the COVID restrictions and remarked how well-run every aspect of the rally was.

Impressive entry in Parc Fermé in Bourgogne-Franche-Comté

In the historic speed competition, past WRC driver, Alain Oreille, with wife Sylvie as usual on the notes, was the star of the show, untouchable in his 911 Porsche, finishing over two minutes ahead of reigning French Historic Champion Alain Foulon’s Ford Escort RS and winning 11 of the 12 special stages outright, and fastest in all 12 in his category.  Foulon’s challenge was hampered by a fuel pump failure on the first stage, but he and co-driver, Sébastien Mettai, finished third overall and second to Oreille in the crucial group 1/2/3/4 category.  Benoit Chavet and Pascal Boyer in their BMW M3 drove the only group N/A/B car to outclass them for second overall and victory in their category. 

Christophe and Anne Baillet won a three-Porsche race in the regularity section.

Rally Mont Blanc Morzine

Leader for half the Mont Blanc rally, Alain Rulland in his BMW M3 fell back to third but suddenly went on the attack in the very last stage to pulverise last year’s winner, Pascal Perroud, taking over 18 seconds off him in the stage and nally winning the rally by 6.8 seconds

Next on the French Calendar was the Rallye Mont Blanc, on 3-5 September.  Once again there was a full house, with 315 entries of all categories including 58 in historic competition.  Alain Rulland, accompanied by Xavier Machet, proved himself to be king of the Alpes in his BMW M3, fastest overall and winner of his category.

Three Cheers for Favaro

Jean-Marie Biadatti reports

 The 29th edition of the Tour Auto Optic 2000 had to be postponed to September because of the pandemic and the continuing health situation led some competitors to withdraw at the last minute.  There were nevertheless 195 competitors still at the start, with 102 in regularity and 93 in the competition category, the latter including four previous winners.  Shaun Lynn and Ludovic Caron brought Shelby Cobras, Jean-Pierre Lajournade was in his winning Jaguar E-type, and the winner of the last two editions, Raphaël Favaro, who drove a Lotus Elan 26R in 2018 and 2019, was this year at the wheel of a Jaguar E-Type belonging to his co-driver, Lucien-Charles Nicolet, prepared by Equipe Europe.  Damien Kohler also abandoned his Lotus Elan for a 289 Shelby Cobra maintained by Gipimotor.  Porsche prototypes were in the spotlight for 2020 and there were three 906s in the VHC field, as well as a Porsche 904.

This year there was no start from a chateau but on the legendary Linas-Montlhéry circuit where the first special stage started on the road and ended on the speed ring, making an atypical special that saw Favaro dominate the debate.  We then witnessed a sumptuous battle on the Magny-Cours circuit in grid 4, which saw the victory of Mr John of B’s ​​Porsche 906.  Meanwhile Caron dropped right down in the results following contact with the Cobra of Frédéric Jousset, who was forced to retire.  There was also a beautiful battle in grid 3 between Sébastien Berchon (Austin Healey 100/4) and Stanislas Gurdjian (Morgan +4 Super Sport) that would continue at all circuits.

  

Chased variously by the Cobras of Shaun Lynn, Ludovic Caron and Damien Kohler, and the Porsche 906 of Mr John of B, Raphaël Favaro resisted them all to take his third Tour Auto victory, this time in an E-type Jaguar shared with Lucien-Charles Nicolet

The second leg started from Clermont-Ferrand and allowed competitors to have an early morning race on the grandiose circuit of Charade.   On the evening of this second leg, Mr John of B’s ​​Porsche 906 led the general classification ahead of Lynn by six short seconds, with Kohler and Lajournade further back.

The third leg, which took the rally from Limoges to Toulouse should have included a race on the Albi circuit, but the change of date for the event meant the circuit was no longer available.  Instead, there were three road special stages.  This was Favaro’s day, the Swiss getting to grips with his new mount and winning all three stages! 

On day 4 competitors crisscrossed the roads of southern France, passing through the magnificent site of the Cirque de Navacelles.  Once again Favaro dominated special stages, while Mr John of B lost a little time in a minor exit from the road.  Kohler missed a turning which made him also lose precious seconds. 

 

Less comfortable on the roads, Mr John of B lost time to the GT cars on the special, stages.  Photos PhotoClassicRacing.com

The last leg was shortened, with the finish taking place at the Paul Ricard circuit.  It remained only for Favaro to manage his lead, and he left the scratch win of the last special stage to Lajournade and the victory on the Castellet circuit to Kohler, who won it after a final twist of fate when the Porsche 906 of Mr John of B stopped with a seized gearbox. 

The final victory therefore went to Raphaël Favaro and Lucien-Charles Nicolet ahead of Jean-Pierre Lajournade and Christophe Bouchet and the Cobra of a Damien and Sylvie Kohler for what was an edition filled with suspense and drama. 

We should also note the excellent performance of Sébastien Berchon in his Austin Healey 100/4, a car from grid 3 that punched above its weight to finish in a fine fourth place. 

"

For us it was above all an edition to familiarise ourselves with the Cobra, which is much more powerful than what we have driven in the past,” explained Damien Kohler. “... nishing on the podium is a real satisfaction. Our direct opponents have been warned: next year, we are back to play for the win!”

A very important part of the Tour Auto is the index of performance result.  Here three lovely cars topped the podium, with Gilles and Marielle Couraudon winning in a Porsche 356 Pre-A 1500 ahead of Diego Meier and the romantically named Giacomo Amoroso in a Ferrari 225S Vignale Berlinetta and the Alfa Romeo Giulietta Sprint Veloce of Jean-Yves Beaupigny and Garard Dumesne.  In fifth place was arguably the most exotic car in the rally:  a Pichon Parat Dolomites in the hands of Hugo Baldy.  A good fight all week between the Ferrari 308 Gr4 Michelotto of the Jean brothers and the Porsche 911 3.0 RSR of Emmanuel Brigand in the G/H/I categories resulted in a win for the Italian car, which finally to a lead of 2m16secs over the Porsche.

The regularity section attracts more and more specialists and becomes more and more closely fought.  Regular Tour Auto competitors  Jean-François Nicoules with his son François won this year for the  fourth time at the wheel of a Ford Mustang, beating 2018 winner Jean Rigondet in Porsche 356 and Patrick Bonnardel, driving a Triumph TR4.

For a full report, see out October isse…….

Former British Truck Racing champion Richard Walker is starting preparations for his biggest motor sport challenge to date, as he embarks on a project to contest the Peking-Paris Rally in 2022.

Walker, a multiple truck racing champion, has most recently contested a few races in a Lotus Cortina with his nephew, Jack Walker-Tully, in Masters two-driver events, but now he has bigger plans and is starting build up a 1939 Chevrolet Coupe for the five-week marathon that pits crews against some of the remotest landscapes on the planet.

He plans to do an event in the Sahara next year as a lead-in to Peking-Paris and is keen to do as much of the build work on the car himself.  “I’ll need to know every nut and bolt so that I can hopefully deal with any problems we get on the rally,” said the Nottinghamshire driver.

MAGAZINE  > RALLY NEWS > Truck Champion Aims for Peking-Paris

The organisers of the Motorsport UK British Historic Rally Championship have come up with a significantly altered calendar for 2021 after losing this year’s championship to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Championship manager Colin Heppenstall, from the Roger Albert Clark Rally Motor Club, says he has deliberately opted for events that are less expensive and require less time away.  With the overall state of the economy and some business owners facing difficult times, he wants the 2021 programme to be as affordable and accessible as possible.  It will cover six gravel and two asphalt rallies.

Three new events are on the provisional championship schedule: the Riponian Rally in Yorkshire, the Plains Rally in Wales and the closed-road Three Shires Stages in Worcestershire are all in the BHRC for the first time and will replace the Kielder Forest Rally, the Jim Clark Rally and the Ulster Rally in the eight-round programme.

The schedule of largely one-day rallies, all based on the mainland, means that there will be no ‘sail-away’ rounds next year, but Heppenstall confirmed that he is discussing the possibility of a return to the Isle of Man in 2022.  “We wanted to choose events that give value for money and enjoyment to the competitors,” he said.

The provisional 2021 programme is: Riponian Rally (7 February), Rally North Wales (27 March), Plains Rally (22 May), Red Kite Stages (13 June), Harry Flatters Rally (25 July), Three Shires Stages (5 September), Trackrod Rally (24-25 September) and the Carlisle Stages (22 October).

Six gravel and two asphalt rallies will be on the Biritsh rally Championship menu in 2021

MAGAZINE  > RALLY NEWS > BHRC schedule changes for 2021

We were surprised to find the following message in our inbox from Liz Wenman in mid-July. 

Rally Round is no longer running international car rallies or driving adventures, a decision has been prompted mainly by the situation of the global pandemic but also it is time to enjoy my fabulous family and home life with my husband David to the full.

Liz goes on at some length to thank all her colleagues on the Rally Round team, and her agents in the various countries around the world that Rally Round has visited.  Rally Round has had to cancel two major events due to COVID and an event planned for Mongolia next year was in doubt given that a recce wasn’t possible and TB, as well as Coronavirus, is rife in that country.

Photo:  Founded in 2011 by Simon Hope of H&H Auctions, John Brigden of World Wide Classic Car Rallies (who has since moved on to found Bespoke Rallies) and Liz and David Wenman, H&H Classic Rallies - later re-named Rally Round - went on to organise rallies around the world, including the Rally of Rajasthan, Road to Mandalay, Paris-Madrid and many more.

Founded in 2011 by Simon Hope of H&H Auc ons, John Brigden of World Wide Classic Car Rallies (who has since moved on to found Bespoke Rallies) and Liz and David Wenman, H&H Classic Rallies - later re-named Rally Round - specialised in exo c loca ons and went on to organise rallies around the world, including the Rally of Rajasthan, Road to Mandalay, Paris-Madrid and many more.

MAGAZINE  > RALLY NEWS > Rally Round