So it came around earlier than it’s usual end of season closing round of the competition in November, however day 1 at Hafren Sweet Lamb had the usual wind swept and rain affair, day 2 started with a misty start on Halfway and Port Talbot was damp after some overnight rain. However as usual that didn’t dampen the spirits of the rally hardcore. They were there with the usual joviality, sleeping in camper vans, cars, vans and tents. The aroma of bacon filling the still early mornings, before the sound of WRC car’s fill the air, and gravel was spat out from their tyres. As always the thrill of seeing some of the best drivers in the world on the limit at close quarters was spectacular.
However the same topic came to the forefront of all the conversation’s with those that attended and online afterwards, even amongst the rally media fraternity. There was a lack of spectators, a lack of WRC cars (however the run through by the National B cars dis somewhat make up for this!). So what was the reason for the low numbers, the lack of International promoter being appointed by FIA, the earlier running of the event, the pricing, the lack of cars, the lack of promotion of the event? Whatever it was the FIA, MSA, IMS and Welsh Assembly Government need to get their heads round the table and listen to the rally majority and resolve the issues. Much as it was great from a photography perspective to not have to struggle to get a decent position, to take images. As a rally fan the future running of the event could be in serious jeopardy.
That said I am already looking forward to next year, to more sideways, wheel spinning, airborne WRC cars, especially as more manufacturers are committing to the championship To the smell of bacon filling the early morning air and to the French fans, letting off fireworks directly above my tent at 1am in the morning. WRC Wales Rally GB 2013, Bring it on
My photo’s of the 2012 Wales Rally GB round of the WRC can be found at the links below: