Guide To Rally Co Driving


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Okay, so you are ready to begin the first special stage.

Make sure that your driver can hear you via the intercom, and knows that he should only set off when he hears you shout "GO".

The marshal will usually count you down, but you can often also see the clock. You should count down your driver at 15 seconds (if it is dark this is a good time to remind him to switch on the spot lights), 10 seconds, 5 seconds, then 4, 3, 2 ,1 and finally "GO".

Now you begin to read back your pace notes, and your driver will try to understand them. If this is your first rally, you may lose your place, or get sick, or freeze up. Or if you are lucky you will be a natural co driver and do a great job. Unfortunately you won't know in advance what will happen, so my best advice is MAKE SURE YOUR DRIVER ALLOWS FOR THIS!

If you lose your place in the pace notes make sure you tell you driver immediately! Only tell your driver you have found your place again when you are 100% sure, and have found a reliable reference point.

If all goes well, you will arrive at the end of the stage and see the yellow warning sign followed by the red (end of stage) timing sign. Make sure you keep reading pace notes even after the red sign because sometimes there will be a hazard between the stage finish and the time control. You should tell the driver to slow down as soon as you pass the red sign, as you will soon have to stop at the time control, and arriving backwards into the finish control is not cool.

Congratulations. You have completed your first ever rally stage, and are now more qualified to talk about rallying over a beer than most bar room rally drivers!

During the Rally Continued



Develop a routine for all of your tasks so that they become easier under pressure. For example, practice putting on your helmet,, HANS device, belts, and gloves while seated in the car. Learn to help each other if needed.

Turning pages of pace notes while wearing gloves can be tricky. Bending a corner of each page alternately up and down will help.

Before you start a stage make sure that there are no loose objects in the car. Secure your road book and time card somewhere safe because they may be ejected from the car if you roll over, and if you are lucky enough to keep going your driver will not be amused when you are disqualified at the end of the stage because you lost your time card.

Usually time cards are collected at MTC IN controls, and new cards are provided at MTC OUT controls. Be sure to check that your card is complete before you hand it in, and that the card you are given is yours! Sometimes you may have to collect your time card from a rally official, so pay attention to the instructions.