It was a bold move to take competitors one step closer to real rally action with the Stay Home ‘Real-Time’ Table Top Rally, but it was a winner. HERO-ERA successfully executed the ‘live’ rally challenge where 50 crews entered their cars, scrutineered them, phoned marshals to get their time at a control, and even went through secret route checks, just as in reality.
A team of 21 officials and marshals went through a dry run ‘live’ event seven days prior to the actual Stay Home Rally to iron out any bugs and ensure all went smoothly on March 6th.
Seren Whyte, HERO-ERA Event Manager and prime architect of the successful Virtual Table Top Rally Series with her sister Elise, developed this latest concept from an idea by HERO-ERA Senior Events Manager Nick Reeves.
Seren; “I do believe we got one step closer to reality. Judging by the feedback from the competitors, marshals and officials who were all on zoom and running it just like a real event, they all had a great time!
“The dress rehearsal event made the actual Stay Home rally better as all the officials and marshals were on the same page, this proved so important when running the ‘blind’ concept”.
Seren continued; “As well as the organisers being on zoom, we were on a group WhatsApp just as we would be on an actual rally to keep each other updated. That proved to be entertaining as messages were appearing like ‘Traffic’ or ‘Off the road!’ It was great for morale and great to work on which is why I was surprised just how quickly the time went.
“The first car started at 10.00 am on Saturday with competitors having to send their scrutineering car photos by 9.30 am and this proved to be a highlight for me. Contestants completely got on board with the idea of entering a car, not just a crew, whether it was their dream car or completely made up, some normally serious rallyists were competing in some really zany forms of transport!
“The marshals were in on the act as well texting their normal ‘real time’ questions ‘are we in the right place?’ One picture sent with this message was in a harbour alongside a superyacht!”
It was as close to real rallying as crews can get in Lockdown. Whilst everyone hopes that the real thing is not too far off now, Seren believes that by getting that one step closer it has created even more desire to get back to real time rallying.
“Of course we would all rather be on the events in person, but if our virtual events have become more realistic and create more hunger to go back rallying for real, that is the objective, by keeping people engaged until we can return.
“The Stay Home ‘Real-Time’ Rally has never been done before and I loved working on the creative element, but there are always ways to improve it and make it even more realistic- my mind has been buzzing! I think people will want more ‘Real-Time’ events but only if the need arises, then there is the potential for more in the future.”
The positive feedback suggests that, if required, the Stay Home ‘Real-Time’ Rally will be a winner once more.
Hi, many thanks for a very enjoyable rally we were certainly under pressure it was well executed and certainly got the grey matter working. – Peter & Janet Fletcher
Thank you both for a really great rally. So much work put in to generate the routes and 26 sets of instructions to go with them(!?). And thanks to all the marshals too – I hope all we competitors managed to stay friendly and civil, even under prolonged time pressure!
When I emerged from my “car” at the end, the family said it was like I’d just run a marathon and done an astro-physics exam at the same time! – Stephen Chick
Can I offer you and the rest of the organising team a big thank you for yesterday’s event. Both Steve and I really enjoyed competing and were very impressed by the quality of the organisation. Everything on your side seems to work perfectly – unlike our efforts! Much appreciated, John
Thank you to all involved. Really enjoyed it and appreciated all the effort put in. Regards, Steve H
What a great show! Well organised. Fantastic spirit. Well done. Dirk
Dear Seren, Dear Elise, Dear Marshalls, Dear Result Team, Dear all „Behind the Screen“! I have to admit this was NOT a „Good Event“, … it was an undiscribable MMMMMMMUCH more, SUPER TROUPER, GALACTICAL, SUPERSONIC, EXTRATERRESTRAL GORGEOUS, BLASING event! Thomas and me thought before the start, that it might be somehow similar to the past TT event’s you offered us during the last 12 month. But already seeing the instructions coming at 09:00 UK time made us tremble!!!! You overshoot all our expectations, Rolf Pellini
Starting from the Video – which was 100% helpful – until the last corner on the route, we were under incredible pressure, All the best to ALLLLLLLL of YOU, hope to see us again soon.
Hi Seren, Finished! Exhausting and fantastic fun. Well done on a fabulous concept. All the best. Tim
So this is car 33 and i’ve finished the Stay Home Real Time Rally. The only thing i could think is WOW……. really WOW. I had so much fun. It’s incredible for you behind this how to came up with this mastermind ideas. I want to congratulate all of you for this incredible event. See you at 18h00. And once again Thank You for this amazing event. Ivo Miguel Tavares (Car 33)
Winners of the Stay Home Real-Time Rally 2021
1. James Portway – Vauxhall 30/98
2. Stephen Chick – Alfa Romeo Giulietta SS
3. Rolf Pellini – ‘George’ MG CGT
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