To mark the 50th anniversary of round four of the FIA European Rally Championship, SATA Rallye Açores (4-6 June), series promoter Eurosport Events will increase its privateer prize fund from 20,000 to 50,000 Euros.
In addition to the top-placed privateer finisher receiving a larger cheque for 10,000 Euros, the top three privateer ERC Junior finishers will also share 12,000 Euros – with the leading Junior privateer receiving 6,000 Euros.
And to help rally teams with their logistical costs, event organisers have taken charge of the cost of boat transportation for all rally and service vehicles from Setubal in Portugal to the event’s host town of Ponta Delgada, based on the archipelago’s largest island of São Miguel in the mid-Atlantic. In addition, the organisers are offering six passenger aircraft tickets with event sponsor SATA from the Portuguese capital Lisbon to Ponta Delgada.
Eurosport Events has already given away 60,000 Euros in prize money to the most successful private crews on the opening three rounds of the ERC – with 20,000 Euros awarded at the opening Internationale Jännerrallye powered by GaGa Energy in Austria, Rally Liepāja in Latvia and at the Discover Northern Ireland Circuit of Ireland Rally.
The breakdown of the increased privateer prize fund at SATA Rallye Açores is as follows:
General private driver classification
1st 10,000 Euros
2nd 8,000 Euros
3rd 6,000 Euros
4th 5,000 Euros
5th 4,000 Euros
6th 3,000 Euros
7th 2,000 Euros
ERC Junior private driver classification
1st 6,000 Euros
2nd 4,000 Euros
3rd 2,000 Euros
“The privateer driver is the true hero of the FIA European Rally Championship, the one who embodies the spirit of this great and long-standing championship the best,” said Jean-Baptiste Ley, ERC Co-ordinator. “The introduction of the privateer prize fund this year was a way of showing our appreciation to these great competitors, who – with 70 registered ERC competitors already this year – have shown their love and support of the ERC in large numbers. So, to coincide with the golden anniversary of SATA Rallye Açores, we have increased the privateer prize fund from 20,000 to 50,000 Euros.
“SATA Rallye Açores is a great challenge, featuring some of the most spectacular gravel special stages in the ERC, and the event organisers have also created a very attractive logistics package to encourage teams to come and experience this amazing rally for themselves. Together, we have created excellent financial incentives for this very special edition of the event, and look forward to celebrating it with Europe’s top privateer rally drivers on the beautiful Portuguese island of São Miguel in June.”
This year’s SATA Rallye Açores features 17 special stages covering 216.61 kilometres (88 per cent gravel and 12 per cent asphalt) and will include the famous signature Sete Cidades stage, part of which runs around the rim of an extinct volcano.
Further information, including entry forms, are available from the event’s website: www.satarallyeacores.com
To be eligible for ERC privateer prize money drivers must register for the ERC, receive no manufacturer support*, use tyres from one of the three ERC partner companies (Michelin, Pirelli and Yokohama) and not compete in a Regional Rally Car.
*Eurosport Events will determine privateer status in consultation with the manufacturer in question.