STIFFER CONDITIONS IN THE MONTE CARLO RALLY
55. K.P.H. OVER LAST 1,000 KILOMETRES. ENGINE CHASSIS AND AXLES SEALED TO PREVENT SUBSTITUTION. NO RELIEF CARS, SUPERCHARGERS BANNED
Hardly a point in the regulations for the 1936 Monte Carlo Rally, which were issued last month, has escaped alteration.
A higher average speed and a strict timeschedule for the last stages of the road section will make it difficult to arrive at Monte Carlo with a clean sheet, while elaborate precautions will be taken to prevent engines, axles and other vital parts being changed during the course of the run.
The cars are divided as before into two classes, unlimited and up to 1i-litres, but this year superchargers are banned. The average speed is the same for both classes, that is, 40 k.p.h. for the first part of the run, and 55 k.p.h. over the last 1,000 kilometres. A crew of two is considered the normal complement in both classes, so that ballast will no longer have to be carried unless the pair are under weight, which is not likely to happen as long as they retain the voluminous clothing one usually wears in the rally. The starting points remain the same, but Athens has been restored to its premier position. The marks allotted to the principal points of departure and their distance in kilometres from Monte Carlo are as follows :
This new rating corresponds very well with the severity of the routes to be traversed. The biggest alteration in itinerary is that fixed for competitors from Bucharest. Instead of making north for Warsaw they pass through the formidably named towns of Cluj, Kosice, and ‘Olomouc, to Prague. Conditions over the high plateau of Czecho-Slovakia will be little less severe than on the northern route previously used, and Bucharest is still only to be recommended to those who enjoy motoring under difficulties.
The John o’ Groats route now runs via Bordeaux and Pau instead of Bordeaux and Bayonne, and this alteration reduces the total length of the run by 44 kin. The average speed imposed over the -first part of the routes, as has been said,
is 40 k.p.h. (25 m.p.h.). Competitors who average more than 65 k.p.h. will :be disqualified, though it is not clear how the average speed is to be determined. checks are mentioned, but they only to see that no substitutions of parts of the car shall take Cars may be checked in up to hours ahead of their schedule time, of course they must not leave
until the time stated on route Late arrival is penalised at the rate of .5 marks per additional minute. As to the last part of the journey, the speed of the cars must be regulated so that they average between 55 and 60 k.p.h. Really hard driving will be required to maintain this average of 35 m.p.h. over the final stages between Avignon and Monte Carlo, particularly on tl e winding roads of the Estorels and in the built-up areas which extend onwards from Nice. Apart from that, the margin between arriving early and late on the last two stages is in one case £2 and in the other case 13 minutes, and accurate time-keeping will be required. What with having seals checked up at the control stations and taking on a final supply of fuel before reaching Monte Carlo, those last 150 miles are going to be hectic. The penalty for early or late arrival is in each case .5 marks per Seals are to be placed on the chassis, the radiator and the front and rear axles, to ensure that they shall not be changed • en route. In the case of the engine,
the sealing wire is to be carried round from top to bottom. This will prevent all repairs and in most cases even the adjustment of tappet clearances, between the starting points and Monte Carlo. Relief cars are taboo, and the regula tions forbid ” substantial and continual help from another car entered in the rally.” Occasional help from other competitors is still permitted, which sounds a little vague, and in a doubtful case,
presumably ” the decision of the organisers is final.”
Considered as a whole this year’s regulations .should make it possible for the private individual to compete on reasonably even terms with the factory driver and if strictly interpreted should prevent any more of the wholesale rebuilding of cars which took place in former years during the last stages of the road section. There is the usual examination when
the cars reach Monte Carlo, and then the bonnets are sealed in preparation for the starting test on the morrow. This has been much simplified, and all that is required is that the cars shall start in five minutes, with a penalty of five marks if they refuse. The eliminating test is run on a course of the same dimensions as last year. The figure-of-eight evolution has to be made round a pair of posts 12 metres apart, and cars which go outside the rectangle, measuring some 32 metres b?,20 metres, which surrounds them lose five marks each time they cross the
boundaries. A second attempt will be allowed to any competitor who applies for it. After a day of rest the. Comfort Competition takes place and there are also awards for engine appearance„ which are decided on neatnegs, cleanliness, and accessibility to oil fillers, drain plugs and the like. The main awards remain as before, namely 50.000 francs (2670) for
the larger cars and 12,000 francs for those up to 1,500 c.c. The entry fee for t he large cars is 800 francs and for the smaller ones 650 francs. Regulations are now available in English and can be had from the Royal Automobile Club, Pall Mall, London, SAVA.