Rally of Turkey sure to test even the strongest crews Rally Preview
June 02, 2005
Later this week the Production Car World Rally Championship teams make their maiden foray on the Rally of Turkey. The event, which has been on the WRC calendar since 2003, is for the first time also being run as a PCWRC event this season.
After the Cyprus Rally three weeks ago, Production Car crews will again have to battle rough and rutted gravel stages, remarkably similar to those on the last event. Run in the Anatolian mountains, the conditions will again test the mettle - and patience, of the competitors as they resist the urge to go too quickly over the battered surfaces, risking losing everything in the process.
While not quite as 'slow' and twisty an event as Cyprus, the Rally of Turkey is however, expected to be a 'car killer'. The rock-strewn stages that characterize the rally will no doubt take out a few of even the most seasoned entrants before the end of Leg three this coming Sunday afternoon.
Another factor facing the teams is the heat. Similar again to Cyprus, temperatures are expected to rise well above the 30șC mark, although the fact that some of the stages are at a fairly high altitude may provide a little respite from the Mediterranean heat.
While slightly lower temperatures may mean an easier time for drivers, the same may not be true for the cars. Higher altitudes bring their own set of characteristics to the machines, including making brakes and engines work harder to provide the same performance in the thinner air.
As this is a maiden event for the PCWRC teams, not a lot is known about how the cars will react to the conditions. Interestingly, this is one of only two events this year where all 21 PCWRC entrants have chosen to run (the other being the season-ending Rally Australia). That means there will be twelve SUBARU IMPREZAs from the Production Car World Rally Championship on the stages here in Turkey this weekend.
Although it's impossible to tell exactly what to expect in terms of tyres until the start of the event, the Pirelli-shod cars may have a slight advantage on the rough Turkish terrain.