Entries in the 2018 Adelaide Rally are set to eclipse the 300 mark this December, a figure not seen in tarmac rallying at any event for some years.
“People just love the format. It's inexpensive, on the doorstep of the capital city, easy to recce and we have great roads that are tight and challenging," Event Directori, Tim Possingham, says.
"What people probably love the most is being part of the greater Adelaide Motorsport Festival. It's huge, and rally participants are front and centre with F1 drivers and notables from around the globe.
"We have seen the shift towards speed limited categories and spirited touring and our event caters for these people very well. The manufacturers have entirely embraced the event in the last couple of years, bringing more cars as well.”
With the field split almost 50/50 touring and competition, we asked Possingham what his predictions were for the competition side going forward.
“We have changed the event route quite significantly from days of old, mainly by way of running tighter stages that have lower average speeds. You won’t see stages where cars are holding 200+ kph for minutes on end.
"Our event is more about driving skill and it has some stages that are so technical they have average speeds of the top cars of under 100kph in some cases.
"This is gradually bringing better drivers to the event and a larger cross section of cars. An AE86 Corolla can podium against a 600hp TR7 V8 with the right driver, and that’s actually happened.
"At the same time the Challenge category that’s speed limited to 130kph is growing immensely, there are about 30 cars in that category alone.
"We have 32 stages this year with the longest one at 14km. The event is run over four days and we plan to work towards increasing competitive kilometres to nearly 200 for 2019 and maintain the four-day format.
"It’s a challenge to build the length out in an area so close to a capital city, and also whilst maintaining our philosophy on road choice, but we believe we can do it.
"Remember this isn’t an event run two and a half hours away from a capital city in the middle of nowhere, some stages are literally 12 minutes from downtown Adelaide.”
Entries for the Adelaide Rally close on November 1st at www.adelaiderally.com.au
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