New and revamped special stages for 2012 Geko Ypres Rally
While crews are competing in Cyprus for the closing event of the 2011 IRC championship, preparations for the 2012 Geko Ypres Rally have already started. The rally keeps its traditional spot on the calendar and will take place the last weekend of June. The Eurosport Group, which promotes the IRC through Eurosport Events, will once again be a privileged partner of the Geko Ypres Rally, and provide large-scale TV-coverage of the event taking place 21-23 June 2012.
Although taking place in the familiar landmarks of the Ypres region, the special stages of the 2012 edition of the Geko Ypres Rally will not be business as usual. Some of the legendary special stages will undergo in-depth changes and modifications to make this demanding rally even more challenging for pilots and more attractive for spectators. Both the special stages of "Kemmel" and "Heuvelland" will be completely revamped, resulting in two new extremely technical and thrilling special stages. Moreover, on Friday an all-new special stage in the Heuvelland-region will be introduced: unchartered territory but the narrow, bumpy roads perfectly match the unique character of the Geko Ypres Rally.
Just like in 2011 crews will also cross the French border as they head for two special stages in the Lille Métropole region. The special stage of Lille Métropole, which was very well received by pilots and spectators last year, will again be held in the vicinity of Linselles, whereas the show special stage in the centre of Wasquehal remains. The heart of the rally, the service area and The Rally Village, stay in the centre of Ypres, on the town's beautiful Market Square.
In 2012 the Geko Ypres Rally will also count for the Dutch Open Rally Championship, as confirmed by KNAF, the Dutch automobile federation. Championship contenders have to participate in at least two foreign rallies and have to announce their selection beginning of March next year.
2012 will also mark the 20th anniversary of the Ypres Historic Rally. This jubilee edition will of course be supported by festivities and special features. More details on this anniversary edition in the coming months.