We’ve complained about the route a few times, questioning the logic when it forces us off the smooth paved highways onto some rotten bumpy track to take us through a few small villages. The annoyance is really just to do with having a pretty unsuitable car for some of the very rough roads and it is not shared by all competitors. The upside, however, is that while the motorways are often quite featureless the sights on the rough roads are a world apart. Just a few miles from the now expensive cars hurtling along between prosperous cities lies a very different part of Europe.

It’s also a real delight to see all the families standing out by the side of the road, kids jumping up and down, waving and screaming as we pass. It does mean we are normally driving these sections with one hand (waving with the other) and hitting potholes as we are looking at the excited spectators instead of every single inch of the rutted road ahead.

This is the first time that the rally has passed through Belarus and even if it stays on this course in 2019 it would still be a very rare event for these young kids to see ’20’s Bentleys, 50’s Chevys and 60’s Alfas and Mercs charging down their village street. We wave some more..


L1020592 L1020588