Asphalt driving has recently been the main focus for Pontus Tidemand as that is the surface for the remaining rallies in the Junior WRC series. After a detour on gravel in East Sweden Rally, it’s now time to get back to asphalt before next week’s JWRC event in France. With that in mind, Pontus and co-driver Ola Fløene participate in this weekend’s East Belgian Rally with a Ford Fiesta R2.
East Belgian Rally is a part of the Belgian Championship as well as Citroën Racing Trophy and Ford Fiesta Sport Trophy. The surface is 99% asphalt and only 1% gravel and the event consists of 153,9 km special stages, which are devided into five unique stages. Out of those five, three stages will be driven three times and two will be repeated two times. The reconnaissance takes place on Friday and the actual competition starts at nine o’clock on Saturday morning. It will be a long day with four service breaks before the first car reaches the finish line around 10 pm.
“It will be really good to get a runthrough on asphalt this close to the next JWRC event”, says Pontus. “East Belgian Rally is a quite compact rally with relatively many full speed kilometers, so I’m hoping to still have the pace in my body when it kicks off in France next Thursday.”
More than 130 crews have entered the rally and the line-up contains many interesting names. The current second place holder in the WRC, Thierry Neuville, and Timo van der Marel, who just like Pontus participated in WRC Academy last year, will both come to start in Ford Fiesta R2’s and a fight in the two wheel drive category is predicted.
“There are plenty of tough competition to compare yourself with this weekend, so I’m hoping for an exciting rally although we primarily see this as a warmup”, says Pontus.
Follow East Belgian Rally live here.
Time schedule East Belgian Rally 2013:
Saturday 28 September
|SS1||Büllingen 1||14,90 km||09:28|
|SS2||Bütgenbach 1||8,10 km||10:11|
|SS3||Amel 1||12,31 km||10:44|
|SS4||St-Vith 1||14,00 km||12:37|
|SS5||Burg-Reuland 1||10,00 km||13:20|
|SS6||Büllingen 2||14,90 km||14:53|
|SS7||Bütgenbach 2||8,10 km||15:36|
|SS8||Amel 2||12,31 km||16:09|
|SS9||St-Vith 2||14,00 km||18:02|
|SS10||Burg-Reuland 2||10,00 km||18:45|
|SS11||Büllingen 3||14,90 km||20:18|
|SS12||Bütgenbach 3||8,10 km||21:01|
|SS13||Amel 3||12,31 km||21:34|
Photo: André Lavadinho