ERC All Access goes behind the scenes with co-driver Magalhaes
Tonight’s ERC All Access programme will go behind the scenes with multiple event-winning co-driver Hugo Magalhães.
A winner of three FIA European Rally Championship events, Magalhães co-drove Saudi Arabia’s Rakan Al-Rashed on last weekend’s Cyprus Rally, having also worked with his namesake and fellow Portuguese Bruno Magalhães, plus Briton Nabila Tejpar in the ERC this season.
While the programme will follow his participation on the Cyprus Rally, it will also give viewers a rare insight into the job of a co-driver and discover why it’s more than just reading pacenotes.
Ahead of the event, Magalhães spoke about some of the challenges he faced working with different drivers in different cars and using different languages to read pacenotes.
“It’s not so easy but I have been putting a lot of efforts on that, it’s my true passion and I arrange my schedule to be with this amount of drivers,” Magalhães said. “Of course I need to change my mind from one driver to another because all of them are using a different pacenote system. Sometimes it looks easy but it requires a lot of work to be prepared.”
With Al-Rashed unable to speak Portuguese and Magalhães not an Arabic-speaker, English is used in the ŠKODA Fabia R5 they share in the ERC.
“We are using the pacenotes in English and so far, we are doing quite well,” said Magalhães. “Sometimes on the stages when you need to react super-fast I am spelling a small word in Portuguese, it’s quite funny but in the end it works.”
As well as working with different co-drivers, Magalhães has to switch between R2 and R5 machinery, depending on which driver he is working with.
“You need to be very aware of the speed [difference] so you need to sometimes take some caution,” he said. “With R5 cars you think the corner was faster than you think because the last rally is in an R2 car and you need to manage very well the situation. But I enjoy the job a lot. I think I’m the happies guy in the world.”
ERC All Access is broadcast on Eurosport tonight with replays during the week. Check local listings for details.