All the stars aligned to make the 26th Historic Monte-Carlo Rally a thorough success, with perfect weather only contributing to another memorable vintage rally organised by the Monaco Automobile Club.
233 crews from all four corners of the continent came together for a testing rally that covered a lot of ground and many special routes between Ardèche and the Alpes-Maritimes, in which the rally traditionally concluded with the Col de Turini.
A wide range of cars, registered between 1911 and 1983, made for quite the sight and sound for locals who welcomed the spectacular rally with open arms.
In the end, there could only be one winning crew. The Belgian duo of Michel Decremer and Jennifer Hugo, who led the way from the afternoon of Saturday, February 3 until midnight on Tuesday, February 6. Their weapon of choice being a stunning and clearly very rapid 1979 Opel Ascona 400.
This is the second victory for a Belgian duo at a Monte-Carlo Rally in 15 days, as Thierry Neuville and Martijn Wydaeghe won the World Rally Championship version of the event at the end of January.
Completing the podium were two Italian crews. In second place was Giorgio Schon and Francesco Giammarino in an Austin Mini Cooper S, while Maurizio Aiolfi and Carlo Merenda took third place, having won two stages in a Lancia Beta Coupé 1800.
The competing cars altogether on Monaco’s Quai Albert-Ier, image by Max Brodie
All cars returned to the Principality by the evening of Wednesday, February 7, before a gala evening at the Salle des Etoiles capped off another triumphant Historic Monte-Carlo Rally.
Featured image courtesy of the Monaco Automobile Club: the winning duo of Michel Decremer and Jennifer Hugo in the 1979 Opel Ascona 400