Happy 90th birthday to the 2022 Monte Carlo Rally. And for this special occasion the Automobile Club of Monaco has designed a unique route, oriented south and very much focused on the Principality with a set of very demanding special stages selected in the Alpes-Maritimes and Alpes-de-Haute-Provence.
As much as 95% of the route has been modified to celebrate the running of this 90th anniversary race. And this is the first in the era with a new category featuring hybrid engines, not the least from the powerhouses Toyota, Hyundai and Ford.
Goodbye Gap in 2022, which in the highest department in France will not be featured in this 90th rally.
Look to the Principality and the majestic and newly renovated Casino Square which is where the official start of the 90th Monte-Carlo Rally is scheduled Thursday January 20 at 06:45pm. The last entirely southern focussed race was back as far as 2006. 2022 will make history again.
After the start, the drivers will take on the mountainous roads of the Alpes-Maritimes and cross the daunting Col de Turini. An action-packed 38.83 km are scheduled for this first night with the Lucéram-Lantosque and La Bollène-Vésubie-Moulinet special which crosses the Turini and is the longest special of the rally at 23.52 km.
On Friday January 21, the crews will head for the northern part of Alpes-Maritimes for a second day of racing against the clock totalling 118.88 km of stages, in two loops of three stages next to the Mercantour National Park.
The Roure-Beuil, Pierlas-Ilonse and La Tour-sur-Tinée-Saint-Jean-la-Rivière specials are scheduled for the morning. In the afternoon, a short break at Puget-Théniers will be observed in this toughest day of the Rally in order to change the tyres before a second identical loop to end the day.
Day 3 will be set in the Alpes-de-Haute-Provence on Saturday January 22 for 94.10 kilometers of stages starting with Le Fugeret / Thorame-Haute (SS9 – 18.5km – 8:17am) nicknamed La Colle Saint-Michel by specialists. Then a double loop will follow, before and after a mid-day pause in Digne-les-Bains for regrouping and changing tyres. A brand new stage Saint-Jeannet / Malijai (SS10/12 – 17.04km – 10:08am / 2:08pm) will be paired with the ominous Saint-Geniez / Thoard (SS11/13 – 20.76km – 11:16am / 3:16pm) through Authon and the very demanding Col de Fontbelle, all of this without any possibility of service during the day, which will surely prove exhausting for the remaining crews. Treacherous bends galore. Thrills certainly guaranteed.
Final Day Cliffhanger
In order to conclude this 90th edition in style, on Sunday January 23, four stages totalling 67.52 kilometers will be set, without any service allowed, in the north-west of Alpes-Maritimes, close to the Alpes-de-Haute-Provence. This last day is often decisive – an edge of your seat cliffhanger literally and metaphorically.
Each stage will be run twice, starting with a new sector La Penne / Collongues (SS14/16 – 19.45km – 8:45am / 10:55am) and continuing with Briançonnet / Val-de-Chalvagne / Entrevaux (SS15/17 – 14.31km – 10:08am / 12:18pm) through Col du Buis and Val-de-Chalvagne, where the second run will be the Power Stage. Remaining crews will then be able to rejoin Monaco around 02:00pm to cross the finish line before attending the traditional Prize Ceremony of the most glamorous rally in the world on Casino Square.
The opening round of the World Rally Championship and the Monte Carlo Rally’s 90th birthday is quintessentially Monaco in 2022 and hardly 6 months away!
The entire Course: already featured in the French Press and to be confirmed:
Thursday January 20, 2022: SS1 – Lucéram-Lantosque (15.31km, 8:18 pm); SS 2 – La Bollène Vésubie-Moulinet (23.52km, 9:26 pm)
Friday January 21, 2022: SS 3 – Roure-Beuil (18.44km, 9.14am); SS 4 – Pierlas-Ilonse (19.90km, 10:02 am); SS 5 – La Tour sur Tinée-Saint Jean la Rivière (21.10km, 11h); SS 6 – Roure-Beuil (18.44km, 14:43; SS 7 – Pierlas-Ilonse (19.90km, 15:31; SS 8 – La Tour sur Tinée-Saint Jean la Rivière (21.10km, 16:29))
Saturday January 22, 2022: SS 9 – Le Fugeret-Thorame Haute (18.50km, 8:17 am); SS 10 – Saint Jeannet-Malijai (17.04km, 10:08 am); SS 11 – Saint Geniez-Thoard (20.76km, 11:16 am); SS 12 – Saint Jeannet-Malijai (17.04km, 2:08 pm); SS 13 – Saint Geniez-Thoard (20.76km, 15:16)
Sunday 23 January 2022: SS 14 – La Penne-Collongues (19.45km, 8.45am); SS 15 – Briançonnet-Entrevaux (14.31km, 10:08 am); SS 16 – La Penne-Collongues (19.45km, 10.55am); SS 17 – Briançonnet-Entrevaux (14.31km, 12h18)