Historic Monte Carlo always begins in Reims

Even as they shine, 105 classic cars are expected in Reims on Wednesday 25 and Thursday 26 January, on the occasion of the 25th edition of the Historic Monte-Carlo Rally.

In terms of loyalty, the city of coronations is very strong. In 25 editions, Reims has never missed a start of the historic Monte-Carlo Rally. A unique case in the history of the competition in this regularity and reserved for vintage cars to participate in its classic version that, every year, symbolically departs from several European cities, before joining the Principality. Besides Reims for France, the 2023 race will also start in Oslo (Norway), London (England), Bad-Homburg (Germany) and Turin (Italy). A newcomer, the Italian city has been everything, bringing together the technical tests and the start, on the same day and in the same place, right in the center of the city. The first to win among the participants, because 130 crews from the 281 that entered the event will leave from the capital of Piedmont, slightly more than Champagne. Accustomed to being the most important starting city of the race, Reims can console itself with all the same 105 cars that will leave, Thursday, January 26, from Boulingrin, proving that despite the years and competition, the city of coronations keeps everything His charm. In fact, Oslo (Norway), London (England) and Bad-Homburg (Germany) will join the 59 remaining competitors. “It is always a challenge to keep the flame of the rally alive to face other major cities in France and Europe”, recalls Alexis Boulain, new president of the Reims Champagne historic sports vehicles (RCVHS), the association organizer of the start in Reims , during the official presentation of the event on January 11th. Moreover, a few years ago, Paris and Strasbourg even knocked on the door of the Organizing Committee of the Automobile Club of Monaco. Approaches that therefore did not succeed, to the delight of car enthusiasts in the region.

Cars to admire and drivers to meet

The general public is therefore expected in large numbers, as usual, first at the Parc des expositions. This is where traditional technical analysis comes into play. On Wednesday, January 25, from 2.30 pm to 6.30 pm, and Thursday, January 26, from 8.30 am to 3.30 pm, lovers of beautiful cars as well as the simply curious can feast their eyes. They can freely roam between dozens of rare vehicles. All are models that started a Monte-Carlo classic between 1911 and 1982. And almost all brands are represented: Porsche, Alpine, Ford, BMW… Some cars are particularly rare, such as 1974 Saab Sonet driven by Odilon de Varine Bohan and Benoît Domange, both RCVHS members. This mechanics-focused moment is also a great opportunity to chat with the crew, who are rarely short of good words and anecdotes about their passion. Among the personalities expected from Reims, we can mention Jean-Claude Andruet, double French rally champion in 1968 and 1970, and his co-driver Valérie Closier, director of the private collection of cars of the Prince of Monaco , or Carlos Tavares, managing director of the Stellantis group and regular at the event, associated with Pauline Schoofs, race director within the French Motorsport Federation. The first duo will drive a 1970 Alpine-Renault A110, while the second will be behind a 1979 Peugeot 104 ZS. Note that the winners of the 2022 edition of the Monte Carlo Historique will also be present. They are Danish Henrik Bjerregaard and his Slovak friend Jaromir Svec, in a 1979 Ford Escort RS 2000 MK II.

Big start at Boulingrin

All these wonderful people will leave from the center of the city of Reims, from the Halles du Boulingrin site, Thursday January 26, from 7 pm The 105 crew will leave one by one, at a speed of one vehicle approximately every minute, in in front of an audience that was amazed, but also quite full of ears. The latter can also enjoy upstream, starting at 4:30 pm, with various activities.

In the Monte Carlo Historique program in Reims

The public has an appointment from Wednesday January 25, from 2:30 pm to 6:30 pm, at the Reims exhibition center, to attend the technical and administrative tests. They will continue on Thursday, January 26, all day from 8:30 am to 3:30 pm The big departure is scheduled for the same day, from 7 pm one vehicle per minute. As a reminder, all events related to the Historic Monte-Carlo Rally are free.

Nine regional crews leaving Reims

United under the banner of the Reims Champagne Historic Sports Vehicles Association (RCVHS), nine teams are at the start of this 24th edition, from the coronation city: Maxime Berruer and Fabrice Berruer (N°51, 1981 Volkswagen Golf GTI), Lionel Garnier and Bertrand Triffault (N°119, 1966 Porsche 912), Dominique Peccenini and Philippe Darre (N°162, 1978 Fiat 127 Sport), Jean-Philippe Loth and Christian Loth (N°172, Alfa Romeo 2000 GTV from 1971) , David Comoy and Stéphane Renaudin (N°173, Porsche 911 SC from 1982), Jean Poilvert and Gilles Fort (N°174, Fiat 124 Coupé from 1973), Paul de Varine and Christine Collinet (N°193, Bond Team of 1964 ), Odilon of Varine Bohan and Benoit Domange (N°194, Saab Sonett of 1974) and François Durin and Patricia Durin (N°195, MG B GT of 1972).

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