RAC Rally of The Tests 2018

Harrogate - Bristol


Harrogate - Bristol

From its inception in 1932, the RAC Rally has been at the pinnacle and forefront of motor sport worldwide, it has attracted many of the leading lights to compete in what has always been regarded as one of the toughest and challenging events ever. That first year saw no less than 341 competitors leave the start from nine different towns and converge on the seaside town of Torquay. Each different starting point comprised a route of around 1000 miles with four check points along the way. There was no official winner but the ‘competitor with fewest penalties’ went to Colonel A H Loughborough in his Lanchester.

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Event Description

Expert difficulty

After the war, the RAC Rally was renamed ‘The RAC Rally of the Tests’ and resumed with a much more demanding format with more emphasis on the driving tests and navigational challenges that are such an important part of the Rally of the Tests we know today. Bournemouth was its finishing point in 1951. Best performance went to Ian and Pat Appleyard who would go on to be an inspiration to other competitors during the fifties and into the sixties. The event proved so popular that only the Suez Canal Crisis in 1957 and the outbreak of foot and mouth disease in 1967 could prevent it running annually – the RAC Rally was here to stay.

It was a golden era for rallying, entries would often soar above 200 with many of the ‘Works’ teams fielding entries – the interest in the competitors and cars was huge and gave rise to many household names. The fifties saw a shift from the touring style of event of the thirties into one that challenged both driver and navigator alike with driving tests and legs during both the day and night time. 1960 was the final running of ‘the RAC Rally of the Tests’ after the organisers had negotiated the use of a three-mile section of forest road in Argyll, Scotland that proved so popular that the following year the forests of the UK were opened up to the event.

In 1961, the RAC Rally of the Forests was born, it was to be a ground-breaking move that cemented the future of stage rallying in the UK and was won by Erik Carlsson who was navigated by HERO founder John Brown in a Saab 96.

HERO Events are delighted to announce that with the continued support of the Royal Automobile Club and RAC Motoring Services we will continue to grow the event in its current and authentic format. We invite you to take part in this historic occasion, we are sure it will capture the imagination and affection of the public as they witness these magnificent vehicles and crews battling for supremacy once again.

Event Characteristics

Start Date


(Excluding scrutineering)

Finish Date


Current Entry fee


(Starting from)

Length of route

750 miles (TBC)

(1200 km) (TBC)

Pre-event training session


(400 km)

Approximate daily mileage

250 miles

(Cars built before this date)

Vehicle eligibility



Navigation type


Night sections


Expected Tests


Expected Regularities


HERO Cup coefficient


This event runs under the regulations of the Fédération Internationale des Véhicules Anciens (FIVA)

Vehicle Information

  • Only vehicles of a type produced pre-1968 are eligible for overall awards.
  • The cars will be spilt into classes, based on age and cc.
  • HERO continue to generally favour older cars and the route chosen has been planned around cars from the 1960’s but both older and newer cars will feel equally at home.
  • The scoring on the test sections is class based so you will be scoring against other similar aged cars.
  • Vehicle eligibility is defined in the HERO Standard Regulations, these are available in the event documentation section below.

What is included

  • Entry to the event for a crew of two people
  • Help from the most experienced team in historic rallying
  • Detailed road book with plotting instructions and overview maps
  • Mechanical assistance available if required during the event
  • Lunches and dinners during the event
  • Refreshment halts
  • Extensive awards list
  • Accommodation from 8th of November to 11th of November inclusive
  • Welcome buffet on Thursday the 8th of November
  • Black Tie Awards Presentation Dinner on Sunday the 11th of November

Entry qualification:

1. Entries are only accepted on receipt of a completed online application form and the deposit of £300 being received.

2. The entry is only confirmed once the balance in received on or before the due date of 31st July 2017

Entries received that do not meet the criteria of 1 and 2 above will be automatically moved to the event Waitlist and an entry on the Waitlist will be moved up to the entry.

Event Schedule


Prologue - Harrogate - Harrogate

The first leg of the event is designed to give crews a taste of the upcoming three days. Set in the classic rallying territory of North Yorkshire, this year's extended Prologue will see a couple of hours of competition in the dark comprising of Regularities and Tests.


Day 1 - Harrogate - East Midlands

Day 1
From Harrogate it started. We truly hope that this event won't encounter the treacherous conditions that prompted the classic film of the 1971 RAC Rally, but who knows? We venture into new territory on this leg as we head south towards our overnight halt in the East Midlands.


Day 2 - East Midlands - South Wales

Day 2
We head west today and then further south. Crossing into Wales, you will be challenged and tested by some of the most fantastic driving roads in the UK- and possibly some of the best private land based sections too! We overnight in South Wales prior to the final leg which will be based in the south-west of England.


Day 3 - South Wales - Bristol

Day 3
The Final Day.
Leaving Wales behind, a journey into the myriad of lanes that form Somerset and surrounding counties. This will be a press-on final leg with tests and regularities aplenty - with the distinct possibility of some 'challenges' provided by Guy and Anthony to keep you on your toes. You will be welcomed to the RAC Control Centre for some tests before the people of Bristol welcome you to their town for the finish - who will be the winner?


Entry Lists

RAC Rally of The Tests 2018 - Confirmed Entries

RAC Rally of The Tests 2018 - Accepted Entries

RAC Rally of The Tests 2018 - Pending Entries

Event Documentation

Equipment Check-List


Previous event reports