Rally season starts this weekend in Ottawa Valley
Coupe Du Quebec Gets New Life In 2004!
Montreal, February 4th . -- Rallye Perce-Neige, the oldest running performance rally in North America, will be held this coming weekend out of Maniwaki, a small logging community 100 kilometres north of Ottawa. Out of the 50-car grid attending the first event in Canada, some 20 will take on the Motul Quebec Rally Cup presented by DMS North America challenge for two-wheel drive vehicles. With heavy snowfalls expected this week, rally crews could face nightmarish twisty logging roads Saturday after the event gets underway with an in-town spectator stage. Since 1964, Perce-Neige has been considered one of the most difficult events in the country.
Quebec Rally Cup begins a new era with Motul Lubricants, Drummond Motor Sports (DMS) along with Pole-Position Magazine sponsoring the five-event series for more than 11 500$. Motul Lubricants supports many motorsports teams around the world while Australian-based DMS provides race and rally suspensions for the performance aftermarket. Pole-Position Magazine is the French leading motorsport publication in North America. Other contingency awards will be announced shortly. Overall and class winners will share the biggest prize funds ever distributed in the 30-year history of the Quebec Rally Cup. The Perce-Neige organization will also award a free registration among the participating crews.
Returning 2003 title holder, David Legault, from Ste-Agathe, will be among the favourites but strong opposition is expected from seasoned drivers like Steve Walkington and Jean-Marc Alcaraz. Walkington from Montreal is a former Canadian two-wheel drive class champion while Quebec's Alcaraz has earned the reputation to be quick in winter events. Expect no less then a great show on icy roads since Quebec Rally Cup rules allow cars be shod with studded tires.
Teams will drive to Maniwaki on Friday for technical scrutiny. The 38th Rallye Perce-neige will get underway Saturday February 7th, at 10 a.m. covering more than 250 kilometres in the Haute-Gatineau region, out of which 150 will be timed stages. Crews will be head back to Maniwaki by late afternoon.