Snow falls on the Rocky Mountain Rally

Posted on 27. May, 2010 by in CRC 2010, Event Coverage, Rally News, Rocky Mountain Rally 2010

Anyone hoping for a repeat of high temperatures and cloudless skies experienced at the 2009 edition of the Rocky Mountain Rally will be sorely disappointed by conditions this year. Some stages are already under as much as a foot of snow in places, and more snow is forecast through the next 36 hours.

“Terrible,” is how Antoine L’Estage described the stages after a long day of recce. 2010 marks the first time that the rally has conducted recce, giving the competitors a chance to look at the roads, and see what they will need to win.

“I really think that the Friday stages will be on snow,” said L’Estage. “Saturday will be tough with tire choice. Hopefully I flip the right side of the coin and take the right tires.”

The trouble is that the stages on Friday and Saturday are far apart and conditions will be unpredictable. Road position will play a factor in determining the winner, with the first car on the road having to sweep away loose material.

“We start third, so we’re not the guinea pig,” said Pat Richard. “If it’s all snow I’d rather be in front.”

The man who starts the day out front tomorrow is Craig Henderson.

“I’d rather be fourth, but we won’t be in first for long so it’s ok,” said Henderson.

For both Richard and L’Estage, the event will be critical in their bids on the championship. Both teams failed to score significant points at the season opener, the Rallye Perce Neige. Dark horse Bruno Carre won the opening rally of the year and currently leads the championship. This will be his second year at the Rocky Mountain Rally, having crashed out of the event in 2009. Mathieu L’Estage, second in the championship standings has not entered the Rocky Mountain Rally, while Craig Henderson is third in the points.

New to the Canadian Rally Championship is additional support from series sponsor Yokohama tires. Yokohama has outfitted a support truck that will travel to every event of the Canadian Rally Championship, providing on site support and tire mounting services.

Fans will be able to see cars in downtown Calgary, on the 200 block of Stephen Avenue Mall as of 11am. The rally starts at noon, and teams will head west of Calgary for six stages in Kananaskis Country. The rally will resume on Saturday with an additional eight stages near Claresholm. The tough conditions are sure to demand the most of the teams and keep things exciting for fans.

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