The learning continues for von Thurn und Taxis in ERC 2020
Albert von Thurn und Taxis is treating the upcoming FIA European Rally Championship season as another opportunity to build his experience of rallying following his circuit racing exploits.
German von Thurn und Taxis has been an ERC regular since 2017, scoring points and making progress – mainly behind the wheel of a ŠKODA Fabia R5 – each season.
For 2020 he plans to undertake a six-round campaign, again linking up with Austrian co-driver Bernhard Ettel and Raimund Baumschlager’s BRR outfit. He spoke to Motorsport Akutell’s Reiner Kuhn.
Rallying a big fascination
“After 10 years with the GT3 I was more or less on the limit time-wise and the costs were really exploding,” he said. “Rally driving was always my dream. Everybody told me it was too dangerous and too difficult and too much work, but the fascination is so much bigger.”
Pacenotes must be perfect
Von Thurn und Taxis admits pacenote preparation remains one of the biggest challenges he faces as a rally driver. “You just have two runs over the stage in the recce and your pacenotes must be really perfect, otherwise you are not able to be on the speed. You need a precise and functional pacenote system to compete with experienced drivers who invest so much time to prepare every rally.”
Fear not pictured
“Although I’m not easily scared, for sure I am not as crazy as some other guys, I try to be on the safe side of risk, adapted to my level of competence in pacenotes,” said the 36-year-old. “But driving-wise I have no problems to handle these types of cars on gravel or Tarmac.”
Two rallies, same tough challenge
Von Thurn und Taxis has 21 ERC starts to his name with a best finish of fourth overall on the Cyprus Rally in 2017. He considers the gravel-based island event and the all-asphalt Barum Czech Rally Zlín as the toughest on the calendar. “Even if the surfaces of the Barum Rally and Cyprus Rally are completely different, they both require the same tough approach. If you want to be in front, you have to go full attack. On the Barum Rally that’s on difficult Tarmac roads with changing grip levels. In Cyprus there is the sand and big stones.”