Rally is an adrenaline sport that offers its fans an unforgettable experience. Not only can you safely view the cars during the competition weekend from the spectator areas along the stages, but you can also get very close to the team in the service area. Join us for a look at what such a rally trip in the ŠKODA ENYAQ Coupé RS iV looks like.
Rally competitions have a long tradition of spectatorship in the Czech Republic, and this is especially true around Mladá Boleslav. This is where our home Rally ŠKODA, later in the 1980s renamed Rally Bohemia, has been held since 1974. It is the fans and the beautiful tracks around Bohemian Paradise that give this event its specific atmosphere.
Preparation is important
Careful preparation is as important for a fan as it is for a racing team. Your chosen event will most likely have its own website with timetables and stage maps. If you can't find the source, try www.ewrc-results.com where there is always a list of all current and past events, along with practical information for spectators that you simply can't do without when attending a rally.
After all, the goal of every rally fan is to get the most attractive spot near the stage and you need to find that ahead of time. The search starts with a detailed study of the map, in which such safe spectator zones are usually marked by the organiser. If you're going to a rally with your family, keep in mind that a seemingly short distance can be a more challenging walk in the real world, especially during events that take place in a hilly terrain. That's why it's a good idea to think about bringing along quality sports equipment. A rally is clearly more of a tourist outing in the countryside than a social event requiring a strict dress code.
It is also important to schedule your time correctly. Those spectators who want to catch up with the fastest riders at the beginning of the start list must know exactly when and where to be. The preparation is therefore, not only, about selecting a location on the map, but also about getting the timing right, which is quite a fun challenge. You definitely won't be able to do all the stages in a row, but if you always skip one, you can make it. There are usually four stages in the morning that are the same as in the afternoon, so if you visit 1 and 3 in the morning and 2 and 4 in the afternoon you can actually complete all the tracks in a single day. The agile ENYAQ Coupé RS iV is perfectly suited for the nimble shifts between stages. And the all-wheel drive system allows you to climb even the more challenging driveways to the track and save valuable time. Spectator parking is often on meadows that may be waterlogged or on a slope.
Take a peek under the hood at the service department
Between the morning and afternoon runs, there is always a longer service break in every rally, which invites you to visit the service area. You'll see tyres, brake components or powertrain or suspension parts being replaced to ensure the car is in its best possible shape for the afternoon's stages. Complex repairs following an accident or puncture are no exception. Rallying is undoubtedly one of the most demanding branches of motorsport, in which the reliability and durability of the rally special is the key to success. Service facilities have another important value for fans: they can get very close to the crews or even get an autograph from the drivers.
Seeing the rally team's mechanics work live is a real treat. A well-coordinated crew can replace virtually any part on a car in a matter of minutes. Their commitment is really admirable.
Whether you are in the service area or in the vicinity of a special stage, you must always respect the safety precautions of the organisers and track marshals in their entirety. Each spectator area is selected for maximum spectator safety and precisely marked out to make it clear where it is no longer safe to go. Failure to comply with these rules may well result in the cancellation of the entire stage by the safety delegate. The organisers monitor the spectators' movements in the Safety car passes before the start of the stage and then also evaluate the safety from the on-board cameras of the competing cars.
Also, during the passage of the competition cars, do not at any cost cross the track outside of the marked crossings where you will be asked to do so by the track marshal. Even though there are 1-2 minute intervals between crews, it is very tricky to predict the distance of an approaching car in an open space. You will endanger yourself, your loved ones and the car crew.
Safety, in short, is the alpha and omega of rallying. And thanks to this, you can enjoy the competition cars in action.
See you at one of the next rallies!