The racing career of the new Abarth 124 Rally kicks off with the car appearing in the 85th Monte Carlo Rally, the first race of the 2017 Rally World Championship to be held from January the 19th to the 22nd. It will be an important test for the new race car with the Scorpion badge. For its competition debut, the car will be driven by three private crews: Frenchmen Francois Delecour and Dominique Savignoni, Italians Gabriele Noberasco and Daniele Michi and young talents Fabio Andolfi and Manuel Fenoli.
The three drivers who will be engaged in this important test have completely different skills: Delecour, the well-known champion who has won in Monte Carlo, Noberasco, the gentlemen-driver known for its spectacular and generous driving style, and the up-and-coming Andolfi, who is considered one of the most promising talents and is supported in Monte Carlo by ACI Sport in the scope of the ACI Team Italia project for young drivers.
The three Abarth 124 Rally cars will be called to tackle the long and difficult course, which is sure to put the resilience of mechanics and drivers to the test in winter conditions.
The 2017 Monte Carlo Rally will start in the Principality of Monaco on Thursday, 19 January at 6.11 p.m. The first of the four days of the race will feature two night-time special stages with arrival in Gap at 0.50 a.m. on Friday the 20th. The second leg of the race will start at 9 a.m. and end after six special stages at 6.02 p.m., again in Gap, from where the crews will set off again on Saturday, 21 January at 7.17 a.m. to reach Monte Carlo at 9.11 p.m. after five stages against the clock. The final leg will start on Sunday, 22 January at 7.40 a.m. and end at 1.53 p.m.: two of the four special stages will traverse the Col de Turini, indisputably the most famous special stage location in the world on which major showdowns between the greatest champions of the speciality were disputed in the past.
The gruelling course - 1411 kilometres long, of which 382 timed - will be a useful test in view of the Abarth 124 rally Trophy consisting of seven rounds all part of the Italian Rally Championship: six on road and one on dirt. The jackpot is very rich with prizes for the absolute ranking, Under 23 drivers and teams. All prizes - 5000 Euro for the winner, 4000 Euro for the team and 2000 Euro for the Under 23 drivers - are cumulative. According to the regulation, prizes will be given to the first three rankings, in each race and final, in each category. The real news of the jackpot is the addition of a prize for the best ranking teams with a final jackpot of 30,000 Euro. The Under 23 winner will also be given the opportunity to compete in the 2017 Monza Rally with the official Abarth 124 Rally. Other prizes include an ACI Sport Federal Super Course and a "rally master" organised directly by the Abarth Racing Team. The winner of the overall ranking will receive their own street-legal Abarth 124 spider.
Turin, 18 January 2017