A shock start to the rally

A shock start to the rally

01/10/2011

The first leg of Rally France-Alsace was marked by a major shock when Sébastien Loeb and Daniel Elena retired with a mechanical problem in SS3. They will not score any points in the eleventh round of the 2011 World Rally Championship, and this has relaunched the title chase.

Sébastien Ogier and Julien Ingrassia led for most of the day and are currently third 2.8s behind the leader, Dani Sordo (Mini John Cooper Works). Petter Solberg and Chris Patterson in second place are only 1 second behind Sordo.

Given the way the event has turned out so far, Rally France-Alsace could prove to be a turning point in deciding the outcome of the 2011 World Rally Championship.

Today, Colmar is the nerve centre of the second leg.
The crews will leave Strasbourg for the second loop of four stages in the Haut-Rhin with a halt in the regrouping park between the two passages.
The final stage of the day is a 2011 innovation as it will take place in the very heart of Mulhouse. It is going to be a great spectacle and will be run on a 3-km stage. Return to Strasbourg in the late afternoon.

Details –Day 2

The second day starts as the crews in the second Rally France-Alsace head for the south of Alsace. They leave Strasbourg very early for the first loop of four stages, which give the drivers/co-drivers no respite, to be covered twice in the Haut-Rhin. This is followed by a break in the Colmar regrouping park between the two passages. As a bonus, there’s a new stage right in the centre of Mulhouse in the early evening.

ES 9/13 : HOHLANDSBOURG – 9,9 km
The rally gets under way in the foothills of the route called the ‘Cinq Châteaux. ‘
Its twisty layout goes through the woods at the foot of the Hohlandsbourg château restored by the Haut-Rhin General Council.
1st pass
Start of 1st car: 08h23
2nd pass
Start of 1st car: 13h02
ES 10/14 : FIRSTPLAN – 16,6 km
The second stage begins almost immediately after the end of the first. Start in the famous Goldert vineyard on the hillside with a magnificent view on the Alsace plain. The route leaves the vineyard for the climb up the Col de Firstplan after which it goes into a forest on a road that’s fairly quick initially, which then becomes much twistier.
La seconde épreuve spéciale s’enchaîne presque immédiatement après l’arrivée de la précédente.
1st pass
Start of 1st car: 08h41
2nd pass
Start of 1st car: 13h20

ES 11/15 : VALLEE DE MUNSTER – 22,3 km
Start from Wasserbourg climb up the Petit Ballon, then a plunge down to Sondernarch followed by a climb back up the ‘Route des Crêtes.’
This stage alternates quick and slow sections, woods and fields of stubble, pasture and forest, wide and narrow roads with magnificent landscapes high up.
1st pass
Start of 1st car : 09h10
2nd pass
Start of 1st car : 13h49

ES 12/16 : GRAND BALLON – 24,1 km
The start is given at mid-altitude on an upward section on a narrow bumpy road leading to the Route des Crêtes, then passing the foot of the Grand Ballon, the highest point of the rally.
After the ski resort the road winds its way between fields of stubble and pastures creating wide hairpins with the Plain of Alsace, the Black Forest and the summits of the Alps as backdrop.
On the way down, the road again goes into the forest as far as the Amic pass becoming narrow and very twisty with various types of surfaces until the finish.
1st pass
Start of 1st car : 10h33
2nd pass
Start of 1st car : 15h12

ES 17 : MULHOUSE – 3,1 km
This is a great stage laid out around the Relais des Sports in Mulhouse where the drivers can show off their skills over two laps to the delight of the thousands of spectators present.
1st pass
Start of 1st car : 16h56

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