Dmack expecting asphalt test on Rallye Deutschland
Previewing the coming German round of the FIA World Rally Championship, tyre supplier Dmack has revealed the ways in which it views the all-asphalt event as another tough challenge. The first full asphalt event of the season attracts fans from across Europe, Dmack is looking forward to testing its tyres on Germany’s demanding special stages as it aims to follow WRC2 victory at Rally Finland. Dick Cormack, Dmack motorsport director, said: “We are hoping to follow the success in Finland on gravel with another solid result on asphalt.
“The variety of surfaces in Germany makes for a demanding event in terms of tyre wear. The DMT-RC has been specifically designed to work in mixed conditions and, once again, we’ve been working hard to develop it based on the information from last year’s events.”
The asphalt rallying rulebook is thrown out the window for Rallye Deutschland, Dmack says, with three different types of special stages with three different road surfaces to test the supplier’s DMT-RC tyre. Many of the German stages run through the technical vineyards high in the hills overlooking the Mosel river. Their narrow, cambered roads are lined with walls and vines and demand precision and instant turn-in from tyres. The surfaces can become slippery with dirt and soil dragged out as drivers cut corners to find the quickest line.
However the toughest conditions by Dmack’s reckoning will be faced on the broken asphalt Arena Panzerplatte stage, which runs twice on Saturday through the infamous Baumholder tank training ground. Grip is compromised as the slippery surface pushes tyres to the limit while the abrasive, broken concrete really tests durability. If that wasn’t enough, huge stones called hinkelsteins line the route, so there’s no room for error.
The third surface is experienced on the more traditional public roads through the Saarland countryside but these smooth stages become treacherously slippery when wet.
To cope with such a wide mix of conditions across one event, Dmack is making the DMT-RC available to crews in the S3 compound. The tread pattern has grooves on the inside to maximise grip and traction while the outside of the tyre delivers the performance aspect allowing drivers to push and lean on the tyre.
Priority crews are allowed a maximum of 28 tyres across the weekend and the leading competitor to run on Dmack will be Eyvind Brynildsen in the Autotek-run Ford Fiesta R5. Dmack will also equip Ricardo Trivino, currently runner-up in the WRC Production Cup, and Rashid Al Ketbi in a second Fiesta R5.
Rallye Deutschland is again based in Trier close to the Luxembourg border but this year’s event will start against the backdrop of the Cologne cathedral on Thursday. Crews will make the long trip south to Trier via two special stages.
Friday’s action runs across the vineyards in the Mosel region with a 65.68km three-stage loop repeated after a service in Trier. Saturday is dominated by two passes over the daunting 41.08km Arena Panzerplatte stage where crews get the opportunity to fit new tyres before the start.
There’s just one repeated test on Sunday before the 16-stage, 371.86km event finishes at the Porta Nigra Unesco world heritage site in the centre of Trier.