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Press release 2023 - 08

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ADAC Eifel Rallye Festival – Meeting of the great classics

  • After forty years, there is cherry on the cake!
  • CO²-neutral on the road: Inhester in the 1984 Porsche 911 SCRS
  • Still available to order for fans programmes, tickets and the official book of the Eifel Rally Festival 2011 - 2022

What the fans have been waiting for is finally here since the entry list for the ADAC Eifel Rallye Festival (July 27th to 29th, 2023) has just been published. More than one hundred and sixty crews and their historic rally cars will shortly transform the Volcanic Eifel into the largest mobile rally car museum. "We can once again offer the friends of historic rallying a very diverse starting field. Among them are vehicles that are rarely seen, but also real exotics like the Ford Mustang that the French singer and actor Johnny Hallyday drove in the 1967 Rally Monte Carlo," explains Reinhard Klein. The head of 'Slowly Sideways' was once again not to be envied for his task, because he could only allow a part of the many entries received to start. "In the meantime, the first rally cars whose active time is not so long over are also coming into the hands of collectors and will be involved in our event."
For example, the Portuguese Group N World Champion Rui Madeira will bring his winning car from 1995, a Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 3, to the Eifel. He shares the transporter with three other teams from his home country. Or there is the Ford Fiesta WRC and the Citroën DS3 WRC from Thierry Neuville's collection and driven by his two brothers. The two original cars from Audi Tradition, brought to the Eifel for Stig Blomqvist and Harald Demuth, take us back a few years. After the VIP drivers, four Renault Alpine cars roll down the ramp - they bear witness to the winners of the Manufacturer title in the very first WRC exactly fifty years ago. The next group to start will be four original! Lancia Rally 037s just to remind us of the Manufacturer title won by the Italians forty years ago. This is followed by a colourful collection of cars that competed in the great classics. The RAC Rally kicks things off, followed by the Sanremo, 1000 Lakes, Acropolis, Corsica, Safari, Portugal and Sweden. The great classics are concluded – of course – by the Queen of rallies and, indeed, it is the Monte Carlo Rally that also provides the most participants.

After forty years of the WRC comes the Cherry on the cake
It is a small miracle if a rally car that was used by the factory team forty years ago at the Safari Rally in Kenya and was subsequently driven in competitions on African soil until 2007 still exists at all. But not only that, the Opel Ascona 400 with the internal chassis identification mark RA50 is here today as it was when it rolled off the ramp at the start of the Safari in 1983. This is thanks to Andreas Hoppe, one of the people who is intensively involved in historic rallying. "The Ascona 400 has always been my dream car. When the chance came up to buy this original found by Reinhard Klein in Africa, all I had to do was convince my wife of this financial adventure," Hoppe explains with a smile. He felt like a fifteen-year-old with pimples proposing to his dream girl. "I had calculated everything and tried to convince her very emotionally. She just said completely without emotion: Yes! However, when she met the 400 for the first time her comment was 'It smells like a camel here'." Now Ramona Hoppe is an enthusiastic co-driver in this Ascona that is still delicately spreading the scent of Africa. She says: "Everything in this RA50 is really original. The switches, the technology, the bags, even the modifications to the map-reading lamp made for its co-pilot of the time, Lofty Drews."
This last factory Ascona 400 ever built was driven by rally professor, Rauno Aaltonen, and co-driver, Lofty Drews, at the Safari forty years ago. Before the final stage, they were within striking distance of the front runners and clocked in early so that they could drive the road first without dust from anyone in front of them. The story goes that team boss Tony Fall had instructed his crew to radio to him in the middle of the night about problems with oil pressure so that their Audi rivals could feel safe. In the middle of the night, Lofty Drews then radioed loudly: "We have problems with the oil pressure!" and Fall immediately backed him up with a grandiose acting performance on the radio. But unfortunately, there were indeed problems with the Ascona’s oil pressure, and eventually everyone could witness the end of their rally live over the radio.
After forty years, there is now going to be a big reunion in Daun of Rauno Aaltonen, Lofty Drews, who comes all the way from Australia, and the RA50. "This is an incredible rounding off of history, the absolute highlight for me." beams Hoppe, "It's like having icing on your cake plus a large cherry."

CO²-neutral on the road: Inhester in the 1984 Porsche 911 SCRS.
For the first time, a historic rally car will be fuelled during the Eifel Rallye Festival by synthetic petrol. On the demonstration stages of the Volcanic Eifel, Wolfgang and Rita Inhester will be on the road in their 1984 Porsche 911 SCRS that is completely CO²-neutral. This is made possible by the supply of the synthetic fuel FuelMotion Synfuel 98, a so-called E-Fuel, by Wirtz GmbH from Ratingen. Its managing director Andreas Deul emphasises: "Our environment is the most valuable asset we have. We feel committed to it in our actions and do our bit every day to ensure that we pass it on to our descendants at least as near as possible to the way we found it." Inhester adds: "Motorsport has been a pioneer of significant innovations since its very beginning. While the majority of these have been of a technical nature, the focus now has to be on climate protection, as some current racing series are already showing." Inhester, who became German Rally Champion in 1980 alongside Achim Warmbold in a factory Toyota Celica, explains: "If everything goes according to plan, we will be CO²-neutral on the road with our forty-year-old Porsche, cleaner than any electric car in Germany. Historic rallying is facing a clean future!" Head of the Festival organisation Otmar Anschütz says: "It is certainly a step in the right direction to set a course for a clean future in historic motorsport."

Still available to order programme booklets and tickets.
In order to optimise the dispatch and to expand the offer, the sale of the programme booklet and tickets will be organised via the RallyWebShop this year. This makes it possible for the first time to offer day tickets in advance in addition to weekend tickets. In addition, the RallyWebShop offers further payment options such as PayPal or credit card.
Here is the link to the different ordering options in the RallyWebShop:-

The prices for the programme booklet and tickets can be found in the price list:

Eifel Rally Festival 2011-2022 – The definitive book.
The official book about the first ten editions of the Eifel Rally Festival is not just a simple chronicle. With the stars of the scene from the past and present and with the most beautiful original cars and replicas from rally history, it is, so to speak, a Who's Who of the sport. Within its pages are the highlights from ten years of the Festival with cars that are normally never seen outside museums, such as the Group S Audi, the rebuilt Safari Stratos and exotics ranging from the Jidé to the Clan Crusader. There is a unique cross-section of rally history with the older classics from Mini and Volvo PV544 to Group 4 legends like the Stratos and the Ascona 400, not forgetting the amazing Group B monsters, the stars of Group A from Lancia to Subaru as well as the spectacular World Rally Cars. The bilingual texts (German and English) and the many photos in the 300-page work are completed by numerous tables and lists of starters and cars from the ten years. The foreword is written by long-time patron Walter Röhrl in which he recalls his own impressions of the Festival. Here is the order link at the RallyWebShop:


The Eifel Rally Festival - Timetable

Thursday, July 27th, 2023  
15:00 – 19:00 Shakedown in Bodenbach
From 20:30 Welcome Evening in the Rally Mile, Open-air rally cinema with cult filmmaker Helmut Deimel
Friday, July 28th, 2023  
From 08:00 hrs Vehicle scrutineering, Rally Mile in Daun
11:00 – 12:00 Autograph session with many stars
From 14:20 Hochkelberg One
From 18.20 Hochkelberg Two, by night
Saturday, July 29th, 2023  
08:30 – 16:00 Asphalt stages in the Volcano Eifel
In between the stages Rally Mile Daun with many attractions
From 19:30 Rally party with honours and prize giving


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