The 46th edition of the TAC Rally in Tielt, the third round of the Belgian Rally Championship, will be hard fought. All title candidates are at the start, proving that the BRC is alive more than ever.
There are 13 R5s at the start in addition to David Bonjean’s lone WRC. Moreover, with all the top players are in Tielt, where the differences in the 14 special stages traditionally remain very small.
The winners of the first two games of the season, Kris Princen and championship leader Cédric Cherain, both opt for a Volkswagen Polo R5. Princen gets a new one at BMA, after his winning car from Haspengouw went up in smoke in the Tour de Corse. Cédric Cherain, who won in Spa with a Skoda Fabia R5, goes on the hunt for a first victory in Flanders with the VW Polo R5 from THX Racing. The third Volkswagen of the new generation is in the hands of Patrick Snijers, who wants to confirm his first Spa scratch on familiar terrain.
Vincent Verschueren, for whom the TAC Rally is a home rally, will spearhead of the large Skoda armada. Hot on his heels will be of Adrian Fernémont, who was able to put the heat on Cherain in Spa. Then there is Ghislain de Mevius, sitting in 2nd after the first two rounds. Sébastien Bedoret, the official Skoda Belgium driver, also wants to confirm his pace.
There are two regional pilots would like to pull a surprise. Bert Cornelis, who can always do a bit more on the slippery asphalt around Tielt, wants to mix in the Top 5 with the Fabia R5. Niels Reynvoet gained confidence by winning the Rallye des Ardennes with the Skoda from SXM, the team that won in Spa.
Kevin Demaerschalk starts his BRC campaign with the fast Citroën C3 R5 from J-Motorsport. Hopefully the Citroën driver has more luck than last season. That can also be said of Pieter-Jan Michiel Cracco, who could not redeem a great performance in Spa due to technical problems on his Ford Fiesta R5. His dad Philip also defends the colors of Jobfixers and from the Netherlands comes a beautiful Hyundai i20 R5 used by Martin van Iersel.
In addition to the powerful WRC of David Bonjean, the fast Mitsubishi of regional driver Bert Coene, the Top 10 is also looking forward to the fastest Porsches 997 GT3. Chris Van Woensel replaces Joch Claerhout in the Porsche, which was given a new look. The tire dealer is competing against Tim Van Parijs and Chris Debyser, the other two Porschists.
And how far can Paul Lietaer get with his Ford Escort Cosworth? Or the fastest BMWs of the M-Cup, which is very strongly occupied with 17 participants. Spectator Mats Van den Brand will try to keep his enthusiasm under control this time. On the smooth asphalt, Franky Boulat, Kurt Braeckevelt and Wim Muilwijk cannot be underestimated …
Keep your Saturday free as on April 13 from 8h in Tielt for a fantastic day of top motorsport during the 46th edition of the TAC Rally!