Rally: How to jump a World Rally Car

From wrc.com

Being able to take off and land a 300-horsepower World Rally Car is an essential skill for a WRC driver. And it’s one that will be put to the test on the next round in Sardinia – a rally that features one of the biggest jumps of the year.

Lurking midway through the Monte Lerno stage, run twice on Saturday June 8, is the infamous ‘Micky’s jump’. Its steep uphill approach and sharp descent offers drivers lots of scope to get it wrong.

WRC Volkswagen Polo R Sebastien Ogier

Sebastien Ogier, Volkswagen Polo R WRC. (Photo: WRi2)

So how do you get it right? We asked Volkswagen’s Andreas Mikkelsen to run through his pre-flight checks:

1: Find out what’s after the jump
“The first thing to say is that the fastest technique over a jump is to hit it as quickly as possible. But if it’s too big to take flat-out, then the most important thing is to find out what’s coming up afterwards. There are different techniques if you need to accelerate or brake on landing.”

2: The quick getaway
“If you want to accelerate away, then you’ll want to brake before arrival at the jump, then hit the throttle just before take off and accelerate over the jump. This will keep the front of the car up and should help it to fly and land level.”

3: The brake and turn
“If you are straight into a braking zone or a corner on landing, then it’s better to try and land on the front wheels first. In this case you’ll want to be braking over the jump. It’s a technique they use in motocross, and it works because landing forward like this puts lots of pressure on the front tires, and you can start to brake with force straightway.”

4: Don’t panic
“When you are airborne you can feel it straightway. Everything goes quiet because there’s no road noise and you hear the engine revs go up. Depending on the jump, you might only see sky through the windscreen. At this point you need faith in your recce notes and your ability to judge the correct speed.”

5: Prepare for impact
“Sometimes landings can be really hard. I find it helps to hold my breath and clench as many muscles in my body as I can until I’m down.”

WRC Ford Fiesta RS Evgeny Novikov

Evgeny Novikov, Ford Fiesta RS WRC. (Photo: WRi2)

About AUTO123.COM - RSS