Whole world live in difficult circumstances because of COVID-19 pandemic. Most companies are closed, people are quarantined at their homes and most sports events are cancelled. After the end of Rally Argentina FIA, all rallies are cancelled for the next 2 months.
The organization team of Azores Rallye took the opportuinty to recreate their rally into the virtual world of DiRT Rally 2.0., so Virtual Azores Rallye is born. The whole thing was published on the official website of FIA and many ERC drivers like Lukyanuk, Ingram and more supported it with their participation on the virtual rallye.
The 1100 official participants reached over 1.480 which shows the love for rally from all fans around the world. After reading the article, I started my preparations. Roadbook was interesting with 6 stages on wet circumstances and other 6 stages on dry gravel of New Zealand, which is exciting as New Zealand is not a representing country inside the game. Roadbook stages and their kms in combination with hardcore damage simulated the best of a real ERC event.
The interest of the hellenic community was also high. We organised our drivers at DiRT Hellenic community on solo drivers and teams. 27 Greeks και 5 Cypriot drivers (plus drivers that didn't signed up on the first place).
In my case, given that I had to drive on DiRT Rally 2.0 for the past one and a half years and with a week of training and preparations, my goal was to finish this rally. It was a tricky rally for the first 6 stages and for the other 6 stages I had to be as consistent as possible.
With this as a main goal, and with the proper preparation along with my teammate and fellow Greek drivers I found a good pace and setup for all the stages. I was a bit anxious about the race which is a bit strange after my 10 years of simracing but I managed to deal with it. My first stage was good, but on the second stage after a driving mistake I ended up with a flat tyre and 1 minute extra on my time.
All other stages went good with fast pace and clean driving. The final results on Monday found me on 65th position of 1.100 total drivers from around the world. (event results).
My participation at Virtual Azores Rallye, reminded me my old times of simrally at Richard Burns Rally and how much I love rallies.
Stay tuned on our YouTube channel, there will be a simrally series really soon!
Watch the onboard videos of some of the stages of Virtual Azores Rallye.