Rally Hungary 2021 - 22-24/10/2021
Starts: 18h00, Nyíregyháza
Finishes: 19h04, Nyíregyháza
Headquarters: Athletic Center of Nyíregyháza, H-4400 Nyíregyháza, Kerék u, Hungary
ERC appearances (since 2004 restructuring): 2 (2019-2020)
Stage distance: 182.01 kilometres
Liaison distance: 784.87 kilometres
Total distance: 966.88 kilometres
Free Practice (for priority drivers): 12h30-14h30, Friday October 22, Napkor (4.35 kilometres)
Qualifying Stage (for priority drivers): 14h45, Friday October 22, Napkor (4.35 kilometres)
Shakedown (for all drivers): 15h30-17h00, Friday October 22, Napkor (4.35 kilometres)
The rally in 100 words: Hungary returned to the ERC for the first time since 2003 with a new sealed-surface event in Nyíregyháza delivering an action-packed 2019 European title decider, which was settled on the very last stage in Chris Ingram’s favour. While the event in the north-east of the country was effectively brand new for 2018, when it ran as the Nyíregyháza Rally and formed a pilot event for future ERC inclusion, the city and surrounding region were regulars on the national scene in previous years. The stages feature fast and narrow sections, although rain and mud provided an unwanted additional challenge in 2019.
Event eligibility: ERC1, ERC2, ERC3, ERC Junior, ERC3 Junior, European Rally Championship for Teams, Abarth Rally Cup, Clio Trophy by Toksport WRT
What’s new for 2021? After not being included on the 2020 itinerary, the Napkor test from 2019 is back as venue of Free Practice, the Qualifying Stage and shakedown from 12h30 on Friday. While few changes have been made to the route, Újhuta has a new finish, while the final four kilometres of Erdőbénye use a single-track forest road, which is even untried by Hungarian championship competitors.
The route in short:
Friday October 22: There’s no time to rest on Rally Hungary with the opening superspecial at the Rabócsiring rallycross track in Máriapócs taking place at the end of a busy day, which begins with a morning of reconnaissance followed by Free Practice, the Qualifying Stage and shakedown, which is for non-priority drivers. Crews will assemble outside Nyíregyháza’s city hall for the ceremonial start from 18h00 local time ahead of SSS Rabócsiring getting underway at 19h03.
Saturday October 23: After Friday night’s action at the Rabócsiring, Saturday begins with the first of two visits to Újhuta at 09h05. It’s off to Füzér-Abaújvár next, the most northerly stage of the event and the longest at 23.50 kilometres, followed by the signature Mád-Disznókő stage through the vineyards. After service in Nyíregyháza, the morning stages are repeated in the afternoon with the first car due at end-of-day service at 17h18. SS4, Mád-Disznókő 1, and SS6, Füzér-Abaújvár, are both due to be shown live on Facebook and YouTube.
Sunday October 24: The first of three visits to the 13.50-kilometre Erdőbénye test is up first on Sunday’s deciding leg. Located northwest of Nyíregyháza, the 13.50-kilometre stage is followed by the 10.85 kilometres of Fóny, which is also used three times during the day. A single run through the Nyíregyháza-Városi test, a 5.78-kilometre street stage, is next with double visits to Erdőbénye and Fóny providing the challenge in the afternoon after midday service in Nyíregyháza. The finish is scheduled at 19h04 outside Nyíregyháza’s city hall. SS11 (Erdőbénye 2), SS13 (Erdőbénye 3) and the stopline of SS14 (Fóny 3) are live on Facebook and YouTube.
2020: Andreas Mikkelsen/Ola Fløene (Škoda Fabia Rally2 Evo)
2019: Frigyes Turán/László Bagaméri (Škoda Fabia R5)
2018: András Hadik/Attila Deák (Ford Fiesta R5)*
*Event ran as the Nyíregyháza Rally
1: Several Hungarian drivers contest the FIA European Rally Championship each season with Tibor Érdi Jr winning the ERC2 title for a second year running in 2018 and four-time national champion Norbert Herczig going on to established himself as a frontrunner. Dávid Botka has been a stage winner in the past, while Kristóf Klausz scored points in ERC3 Junior.
2: Best known as a rallycross venue, the Rabócsiring circuit south of Nyíregyháza traditionally hosts the opening stage of Rally Hungary with drivers going head-to-head on a short course.
3: As well as hosting a round of the FIA European Rally Championship, Nyíregyháza is famous for its zoo, which is home to 500 species and 5000 animals on a 30-hectare site.
4: ERC promoter Eurosport Events has a long association with Hungary through the FIA World Touring Car Championship and now the WTCR – FIA World Touring Car Cup.
5: When Rally Hungary joined the European championship schedule for the first time in 2019 it became the first sealed-surface event to host the ERC finale since Rallye International du Valais in 2015.