Cyprus Rally 2019 - 27-29/09/2019
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Where: Nicosia, Cyprus
The rally in 100 words: The Cyprus Rally has put car and crew to a significant test since 1970. And while the current format is a little less taxing than it once was, underestimating the challenging nature of this rallying heavyweight is a big mistake. Although fundamentally a gravel rally, some Tarmac sections feature, while punishing ambient and ground temperatures are a factor. Returning to Nicosia for 2019 has resulted in mountain stages around the capital being revived. The street stage through the United Nations-controlled Buffer Zone between Nicosia’s Greek Cypriot and Turkish inhabited areas continues remains on the combined ERC and Middle East rally.
FIA European Rally Championship 2019, round 7 of 8
Also counting for…
FIA ERC2, FIA ERC3, FIA European Rally Championship for Teams, ERC Nations’ Cup, ERC Ladies’ Trophy
What’s new for 2019?
Having run in June last season, this year’s Cyprus Rally takes place in September for the first time since 2015. Nicosia takes over from Larnaca as host of the service park, headquarters and media centre, which has resulted in semi-mountainous stages around the capital being included, some of which have been absent from the itinerary since 2009. However, Larnaca continues to host the start and finish ceremonies.
2018: Simos Galatariotis/Antonios Ioannou (ŠKODA Fabia R5)
2017: Nasser Al-Attiyah/Matthieu Baumel (Ford Fiesta R5)
2016: Alexey Lukyanuk/Alexey Arnautov (Ford Fiesta R5)
2015: Nasser Al-Attiyah/Matthieu Baumel (Ford Fiesta R5)
2014: Yazeed Al-Rajhi/Michael Orr (Ford Fiesta RRC)
1: The Cyprus Rally’s origins date back to 1970 when Victor Zachariades won in a Fiat 125. Although he didn’t take part, 1967 ERC champion Vic Elford formed part of the route-planning team.
2: While Nasser Al-Attiyah is the rally’s most successful driver with five victories, other winners include Stig Blomqvist, Marcus Grönholm, Sébastien Loeb, Colin McRae, Carlos Sainz, Petter Solberg, Ari Vatanen, Björn Waldegård and current European championship leader Alexey Lukyanuk, who took top honours in 2016.
3: There have been 10 ‘home’ winners of the Cyprus Rally since the first edition in 1970. Prior to Simos Galatariotis and Antonios Ioannou winning in 2018 by 0.6s in a dramatic final-stage decider, Nicos Thomas and Spiros Georgiou were the last Cypriot pair to triumph back in 2008.
4: The Cyprus Rally has formed part of the ERC calendar in its various formats since 1978. From 2014 it’s been ever-present on the European roster when the event was based in Nicosia after a spell in Pafos.
5: Cyprus is the third largest island in the Mediterranean behind Sicily and Sardinia. There are 380 rural villages in the republic, while Mount Olympus in the Troodos Range peaks at 1951 metres.
Starts: 19h00, Friday 27 September, Larnaca Promenade
Finishes: 18h00, Sunday 29 September, Larnaca Promenade
Headquarters: Poed Building, 184 Kyrineias Avenue, CY-2112, Nicosia
ERC appearances (since 2004 restructuring): 5 (2014-2018)
Stage distance: 199.76 kilometres
Liaison distance: 483.38 kilometres
Total distance: 683.14 kilometres
Surface: Gravel (87%) and Tarmac (13%)
Free Practice (for priority drivers): 07h00, Friday 27 September (3.53kms)
Qualifying Stage (for priority drivers): 10h03, Friday 27 September (3.53kms)
Shakedown (for non-priority drivers): 11h00-12h30, Friday 27 September (3.53kms)
Start order selection: 13h30, Friday 27 September (Journalists’ House, Nicosia)
Ceremonial start: 19h00, Friday 27 September, Larnaca Promenade