Discovering Latvia

Introduced this year in the elite instead of Estonia, the Latvia rally presented its program between July 18 and 21. Including several special stages taken only once, the route offers 300,33 km divided into 20 stages.

Published on 02/05/2024 à 08:36

Loïc ROCCI

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Discovering Latvia

In July the WRC will discover several regions of Latvia (Photo: Tet Rally Latvia)

Latvia constitutes the only real novelty on the 2024 world calendar. And again... It is in fact not completely a new creation since the event belonged to theERC since 2013. An alternation has been put in place with neighboring Estonia which regains Latvia's rank in the ERC before the roles are reversed again in 2025.

For this first at this level, there were concerns about the possibility of finding 300 km of special, but this will ultimately be the case. The 20 sectors selected represent 310 km. Crews who have already competed in this event previously will find sections borrowed from past editions. They will therefore not be surprised to evolve on very fast roads (Martins Sesks won at an average of 113 km/h in 2023). If the division remains close to what is practiced elsewhere with groups of special stages repeated at two times of the day, there are also several routes which will only have one passage which often creates gaps.

This will be the case from Thursday. The service park is based in Liepaja on the west coast of the country. The Cimdenieki shakedown (3 km) will be held there in the morning (from 6:31 a.m. in France, it's going to sting...) before the competitors go to Riga (216 km to the east) for the starting ceremony and a 10,80 km superspecial.

Run in the Talsi region, 140 km northeast of Liepaja, Friday's stage will consist of a loop of three stages to be run twice with a tire change zone at midday. On Saturday, the event will get closer to the nerve center using roads in the Kuldiga and Dienvidkurzeme region. Surprisingly, this stage will include a single ES which will be faced twice. The other 2 will experience a single passage. Finally, with 6 km against the clock during the last day, the “golden Sunday” will not be easy to negotiate. It will take place not far from Liepaja where the final podium will be organized.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Loïc ROCCI

Journalist specializing in rallying past, present and future... and with a southern accent

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