In this post, we will review, the characteristics of Saturday’s Rally Catalunya 2019 stages and the significance of the aero in the results. The analysis is based on the excellent information provided by Antti’s website itgetsfasternow.com, and his very detailed route preview (to be found here).
This post corresponds to sections 3 & 4 (tarmac stages). Special stage 13 (Salou) is not taken into consideration, as it is a super special. Tomorrow we will publish the remaining stages, for Sunday.
SS7/10 Savallà (14,08 km)
It begins on medium wide and smooth tarmac road. It’s fast and flowing except for a few technical places.
Last year average speed: 108.8 km/h
Aero review: A combination of fast straights and technical (fast and medium) corners represent a good chance to prove the importance of a good aerodynamic balance between drag and downforce. Top times will be preferentially set by those cars with an optimized balance.
SS8/11 Querol (21,26 km)
Querol is mostly a fast and flowing stage on medium wide roads. There are very fast passages or slightly slower corners here and there as well as two hairpins, but no full rhythm changes.
Last year average speed: 110,8/111,6 km/h
Aero review: Similar to the previous stage, but with slower corners, where aero loses significance with respect to faster corners.
SS9/12 El Montmell (24,40 km)
The longest tarmac stage of the rally at 24 km. It has often been the fastest stage of the whole rally. The stage begins on a medium wide section with a slightly worn surface. It’s fast but technical going over crests and involving cutting over the edge of the road. It gets very fast at 3.4 km but there’s a chicane at 4.5 km. After passing a village there’s another hyper fast section where the throttle is down for almost two kilometers and the top speed is sustained for almost 20 seconds.
After a more technical section, the stage becomes again more fast-flowing a junction turn onto a slightly wider but bumpy and partly worn road. It’s super fast at first before the usual flow of corners returns. The last 5 km are more twisty with even a couple of hairpins.
Last year average speed: 112,8/111,6 km/h
Aero review: If there’s one stage in the day where aerodynamics is critical, it is this one. High downforce for the fast corners and minimal drag for the very long straights are a must to set a top time, in spite of the last twisty kilometers.
No rain expected. Sunny and light wind.
Useful information for spectators