The Rallye International du Valais in Switzerland, the next round of the Intercontinental Rally Challenge, which runs from October 23-25, has revealed further details of its route.
A statement to the media explained:
"The first day starts on the afternoon of Thursday October 23 and includes three special stages, which are all familiar to the regular visitors. After the start from Martigny at 2.00pm, competitors start the competitive action at 3. 23pm when the first car is due to into the 11.61km Mollens-Les Violettes stage - best known as Crans-Montana, as it was in 2007.
"They will then cross the famous ski resort of Crans-Montana to head for Lens and Icogne for the start of SS2. The 12.22km test between Luc and Tzouma is known as Anzère, another well-known resort. The day ends with Sion, a notorious stage that loops round Les Casernes. It will be run in the opposite direction compared to last year and will include one more lap, making a total length of 7.20km. After a 30-minute regroup, cars will return to Martigny for a 45-minute service at 6.15pm. The leg ends at 7.00pm.
"On Friday 24 October, after a 20-minute service, crews will start the second leg which features several changes, although the names of the stages sound familiar. Once again, the mammoth 40km Les Cols stage between Les Etangs and Sembrancher, will be the climax of the event. This version of the now legendary stage was used in 1999 which marked the 40th anniversary of the rally.
"A new stage called Bagnes (11.15km), starting in Lourtier and finishing in Sarreyer, will follow and then the crews will head back to Martigny via Verbier for a 30-minute regroup and a 20-minute service.
"The afternoon will start with a loop of three special stages. The start of the first one, which covers 22.88km and includes the notorious Col des Planches, is still in La Luy, while the finish is located in Sembrancher. A second pass through Bagnes will be followed by the 9.91km Champex stage. A second loop will take the crews to the Col des Planches and Champex stages again before they return to Martigny at 6.25pm for the last service of the day and a well deserved overnight halt from 7.10pm.
"The same principle applies to Saturday October 25. After the 20-minute service at 8:00am, three stages will be repeated twice. The first one (SS11, 27.57km) is Vercorin, while Veysonnaz is SS12 (9.90km). From there, competitors will head towards another resort, Nendaz, for the 12.30km SS13. Between the two loops of the day are another 20-minute service in Martigny at 12.29 pm and a second pass through the Les Casernes special stage in Sion at 1.15pm.
"Exiting the last 20-minute service scheduled at 3:45pm, survivors will enjoy the final podium ceremony in Martigny at 4.45pm. All the ingredients are in place for another spectacular visit to Switzerland."