A LOOK BACK ON THE 28th RALLY MAROC CLASSIC
12-18 MARCH 2022
RABAT – IFRANE – ERFOUD – OUARZAZATE – MARRAKECH
Sunday March 12 was the welcome day for the 28th edition of the Morocco Classic Rally – La Route du Coeur where the 49 competing crews had an appointment at the Hotel Sofitel Jardin des Roses in Rabat, to go through administrative checks. and don their cars in the colors of the rally and its prestigious partners, before facing the 5 stages, 15 regularity tests and some 1800km to be covered in the heart of the Kingdom of Morocco.
For the first stage, a thick fog accompanied the competitors for the first kilometers before giving way to a radiant sun towards Ezziligha and the first regularity test, contested in a green setting, the result of the rains that sprinkled the kingdom this winter. The participants then had an appointment for a lunch established under caidal tents, lost in the middle of nature around Moulay Bouazza then to dispute the two special stages of the afternoon drawn in the Middle Atlas, not far from the sources of the Oum Rbia. The end of the route gave way to gigantic cedar forests animated by the typical monkeys of the region who had not missed the appointment, attracted by the roar of the engines on the road leading to the Michlifen Resort of Ifrane.
The second stage proposed a great North-South crossing of Morocco, from the mountains to the desert, from Ifrane to Erfoud, long in kilometers but taking a rather rolling route which started under negative temperatures to end under a summer heat of 30 °C.The sun and the blue sky accompanied the participants before lunch in Middelt, with breathtaking views of the snow-capped mountains of the High Atlas. The day’s specials, contested in the vast expanses of desert, offered an interesting fight judging by the level of concentration of the crews at the start.The afternoon then announced the passage of Errachidia via the Ziz gorges and remarkable viewpoints over gigantic palm groves leading to Erfoud and the Kasbah Xaluca hotel, for a specially planned dinner in the surrounding dunes, another mark of Morocco Classic factory.
The route from Erfoud to Ouarzazate has been one of the essentials of the event for many years, and remains, in our eyes, one of the treasures of Morocco that it is imperative to discover as the scenery is sumptuous in these remote areas of the Kingdom.To add to the 4 special stages to be contested, a few wadis had to be crossed to further spice up the winding and narrow course of the Todra gorges, bordered by peaks and cliffs in shades of ocher.The complexity of the regularity events led to an evolution of the standings in the Prestige category with a bitter fight for podium places, while the positions in Classic confirm the trends of the previous stages where the specialists in the discipline are already fighting hard within tenth of a second.At the end of the stage, the Berbere Palace of Ouarzazate, another “monument” of Morocco Classic, welcomed us for an evening of relaxation before attacking a new stage the next day.
The fourth stage, contested in a loop around Ouarzazate, on an original route, will have made it possible to discover a fabulous territory, with recently paved roads offering landscapes worthy of the greatest westerns.A selection of regularity stages with varied profiles was then offered in order to put the participants to the test; the first narrow uphill, then another wide and winding downhill, and to conclude very fast on a road worthy of a racing circuit.The second bivouac lunch of the rally was then organized, with a breathtaking view of exceptional rock formations; this before starting the return to Ouarzazate by a rolling route where everyone could enjoy driving sensations that only Morocco can offer.Back in Ouarzazate in the middle of the afternoon, under an immaculate blue sky and temperatures approaching 30°C, the participants enjoy a well-deserved rest before a cocktail and dinner served “poolside” for the announcement of the results. before the final stage.
For the 5th and last stage, the participants headed from Ouarzazate to Marrakech, taking a winding route between the valley of 1000 kasbahs and the Tizi N’ Tichka pass and took part in two regularity tests.To hear the stories of the pilots and co-pilots, the many bends were an opportunity to enjoy unparalleled driving sensations one last time, before reaching the ramparts of the red city and the official arrival of the Rally judged at the Royal Golf of Marrakech. before joining La Mamounia, end of this 28th edition, 1800km long, 5 stages and 15 special stages.
In the CLASSIC category, the Delvaux-Delvaux team won at the wheel of their Alfa Roméo Giulia Sprint, ahead of Levie-Dewolf and their BMW 1600, separated by only 5 tenths of a second. The lowest gap recorded in the history of the rally. In prestige, the Ettienne-Etienne team won the event at the controls of their BMW i8, after having led the debates during most of the stages.
We look forward to meeting you next year for the 29th edition, which we will present to you soon and which will offer a renewed route made up of novelties and essentials, for a new journey of choice on Moroccan soil!