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Part 7 ~ Rally Leg-2

Jan 08,2006 by Julian Grattidge

The Saturday restart and things become a little clearer. Each driver hands in a time card on finishing the first leg, which the organisers then use to work out the leader board (after any necessary penalties have been applied that is!). The result is a re-seeded start on the second leg, with drivers now starting in the order that they completed previous leg, again the quickest going first. The hours seem to be passing so quickly now that it’s hard to keep up. Before you know it the second leg is underway which basically sees you repeating much of your work from the previous night.

Saturday · The daylight section; time to do it all over again!

A further seven stages are contested during daylight with another service period in between. The feel of the Saturday night stages is quite different from the Friday night stages. Friday night is the adrenalin fuelled start where everybody wants to get on the leader board, and there can often be carnage as enthusiasm gets the better of a number of crews as they stretch themselves beyond the capabilities of either the pace-notes, the car itself, or just have an unlucky moment. It’s a similar pattern each year · you’d be amazed at how many cars retire in the first few night time stages; the 2005 event was a prime example. After a break and regroup, leg-2 begins on the Saturday. With crews now having a ‘feel’ for it, they are ready to push on during the daylight. Most crews prefer the day stages as you can see a lot more of what’s going on and therefore can push harder through the stages. That said, there are a number of crews who actually prefer the night time stages, their reasoning being that your peripheral vision can’t distract you · you just drive to what’s in the spotlights and get on with it!  

Maximum Attack! Dave Hopwood lifts a wheel whilst pushing down towards the graveyard in Dervaig

The leader board can also see some drastic changes during leg-2. If a fast crew have a bad Friday night through either mechanical problems or an ‘off’ but manage to complete the leg, obviously they will drop well down the leader board. But once the second leg starts they will more likely mount a proper assault to try and regain lost ground, therefore you often see some amazing stage times set during leg-2 as crews vie to get back into contention before the final night time stages.

A WRC Subaru pounds down the tarmac during leg-2



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