Ostbelgien Classic 2020/04-05-06 December

The new ingredients of a very promising second edition

At a time when motor sport is forced to quarantine itself, Michael Bartholemy and the entire Ostbelgien Classic team are already working hard on the organisation of the second edition of their event, scheduled for Friday 4th, Saturday 5th and Sunday 6th December 2020. And, as announced on the evening of the first edition, there willl be a number of major changes.

The sports management and route design will now be entrusted to a duo of experts in the field, Joseph Lambert and Eric Chapa. “Above all, I would like to thank Baptiste Gengoux and Lucien Letocart, who helped us bring the first edition of the Ostbelgien Classic to a successful conclusion, with the results we know,” explains Michael Bartholemy. Various considerations led me to contact Joseph Lambert and Eric Chapa, whose reputation is well established. Today I’m pleased to be able to formalise the collaboration with these two major players in the field of regularity rallies for historic vehicles. We are on the same wavelength as to how to develop the event, and the contestants can already expect a very high quality route, in regions that Joseph and Eric know particularly well. And, as relations with the different towns we will drive through are as excellent as they are constructive, we can expect only the best…“.

Another notable change is the arrival of the renowned company JB Time Concept owned by José and Gilles Bailly, which will take charge of the entire timekeeping service, as they do at other events such as the Tour Auto in France.To note that Frank Frankenberg and Marc Kistemann, which were already part of the organization team during the 2019 edition. Are both more than motivated for our new adventure.

Light is Right

Among the conclusions drawn at the end of Year 1 of the Ostbelgien Classic was the observation of a gulf between the experts in regularity rallying, illustrated by the first winners of the event Daniel Reuter and Robert Vandevorst, and those who participated in order to have as much fun as possible. One of the objectives for 2020 was to ensure that both groups of contestants are able to enjoy an equivalent sporting challenge. As a result, an ‘Ostbelgien Classic Light’ category was created…

However, regularity experts can rest assured that the ingredients for last autumn’s success are still there, with an Ostbelgien Classic category that will still consist of a rally with a maximum average speed of 50 km/h, with regularity tests (RT), TC, TCS, a route with pacenotes with some non-metered sections, a few maps drawn or to be drawn at scale 1:25,000, as well as tests on closed roads or on private land.

“It’s a great pleasure to watch the best contestants in a tight race, but for the less experienced teams, or even those with no experience at all, the rally sometimes becomes a little too complicated and terribly demanding,” explains the Eupen-based organiser. Hence the idea of a ‘Light’ category with an average speed of 45 km/h, RT and TC, a route with only metered pacenotes, some easy maps at scale 1:25,000, in addition to tests on closed roads or private land. The aim is for beginners or less experienced teams to have a lot of fun and fight for a position in a ranking tailored to their skill level.”

For the rest, the Ostbelgien Classic will retain its early highlights, starting with the festive atmosphere of the Klötzerbahn, which will be more than ever the centre of the event as the year-end festivities begin. The close cooperation with the City of Eupen has already been confirmed and even strengthened, which will allow everyone to fully enjoy the festive atmosphere of the venue.

As of midnight on Friday, registrations for the Ostbelgien Classic 2020 are open. Go to the event website www.ostbelgien-classic.be to officialise your participation. And between now and the beginning of December, you can be sure that there will be plenty of information about this event which highlights Eastern Belgium and its immediate surroundings.