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Koeru Talv 2005 [Koeru, Estonia 18-19.02]

This weekend (18-19.02) we were in a small Estonian town called Koeru, where a standart-car rally event Koeru Talv 2005 was held. It was a two day event. We received rally documents and passed techical checking in the mrning of the first day which was followed by reconnaissance of the track (stages 1 thru 8). Later in the evening was the start of leg 1 which included SS1-SS4. In the morning we got acquainted with the last 4 stages (SS9-SS12) and the start of leg 2 was given later that day.

I have to say this: during reconnaissance we realised that this rally is gonna be fast! Sometimes we were surprised and thought that some places should have more shikanes (some tires or etc. where you have to slow down in order to get thru) but they didn’t have! But it is more fun to go without shikanes than with them. Of course our standart atmospheric engine doesn’t give us pros in this kind of a track comparet to turbo engines but that’s already a different story. We drive for fun leaving the result in the last position.


Day 1.

Our starting time was set to 9:06pm. Before Special Stage #1 we checked our communication system and appeared that one microphone had probably frozen and didn’t work so we had a one-way communication only. In the first stage we didn’t rush that much because some places were big holes in the road. In these holes one other Latvian crew #3 Daniela Stipniece/Maksim Jemeljanov with Audi 90 quattro broke their engine oil pan during recce. We helped them to get out of the stage and luckily they managed to fix the problem and continue that race. Stage 2 we tried to go faster and in one corner saw one other Latvian crew #127 Agris Pumpucs/Reinis Batarags going with Mazda 323 out in a ditch. Nothing serious but still, they couldn’t manage to get out themselves. Despite the accident as they and the car were ok, they were allowed to continue the race in the next day (thanks to the so called Super Rally system which Estonians overtook from WRC – World Rally Championship) having lots of penalty minutes. Stage three went on the streets of Ervita where we set the best result in this race – 9th place absolute out of 132 cars! SS4 we were quite fast also and after day 1 we placed in 13th place absolute and 8th in our group (4WD).


Day 2

Already in the first stage of day 2 after a crest I sarted braking to late and we didn’t get into one shikane and just went thru it. Luckily we didn’t get any penalty. As we didn’t even touch the tire itself the car was fine, too. Later in this stage there were big holes in the road again and we saw on car crashed in bushes almost on a straight road. Because you hardly can steer when going on a bumpy road fast. In stage 6 we got in one tight corner a little too fast and lost a couple of seconds. In SS7 we scared one track official who was watching shikanes (when somebody hits them he puts the tires back in order for the next car) – we were approaching the shikane with a speed of ~130km/h (~80miles/h) and I started to brake. The road was slippy in the middle and the car got an angle of 45 degrees with the road (which is normal) but it scared the track official and he jumped into bushes!! Of course, nothing bad happened we slowed down successfully and got thru that shikane. In the stage 8 we got off the track more serious for the first time. The approach speed was quite high again and after a crest we had to turn in one side road left. But as the road was going down it takes more time to brake, so we went straight forward. Luckily there was road also and the only harm we did was – we destroyed security bands. Leg 2 had ended and we were still in the same position 13(ABS)/8(4WD). One leg with 4 last stages to go.

The stage 9 started with a loss of some 5 seconds because we didn’t manage to get into one smaller side-road and hit the outside of the road and had to go back a bit and then forward again. When going from this stage to the next one we saw one car in the ditch. I still haven’t understood how he could get there because you don’t go fast in liaisons + there were no corners at all. Anyway we tried to get him out but the ditch was too steep and we left him to wait for help. The guys were ok. Stage 10 was ok just some broken down or crashed cars disturbed a little but nothing major. The start of SS11 was delayed because some car had crashed and blocked the road. Finally we got to start but the track official warned us that the car is still on the road but it is able to pass. So before one crest we say the triangle and slowed down quite a lot but after the crest it appeared that the car was a long distance from that triangle and we were braking with no reason – just lost some time. And the fun started when in the very start of this stage we lost the exhaust pipe – it actually stayed on the car but it wasn’t connected to the exhaust manifold anymore and the noise inside the car was so big that co-driver screamed as loud as he could – and I still barely could understand what he said! And without pace notes we couldn’t drive as fast as we would like. Fortunately there was only one short stage left which was held in the rally town Koeru. It was very simple and short. Despite that we managed to hit a snow bank hard enough to stay there for at least 20-25 seconds until we got out. But the most annoying thing was that it happened just 30 meters away from the finish line. We lost our 16 place there in that one bank.

Although we had this bad happening in the last stage we are satisfied with this rally and our 20th place absolute out of 132 cars and 6th place in 4WD out of 11 crews is our best result up until now.

Brief results in our group 4WD

1 / 1


Jaanus Murakas/Arvo Arula

Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 7


2 / 2


Andrus Uudmäe/Meelis Hõbemägi

Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 7


3 / 3


Henry Ots/Üllar Helde

Subaru Impreza WRX


4 / 4


Virgo Arge/Riho Kallus

Subaru Impreza


5 / 5


Tarmo Silt/Kaupo Kukk

Subaru Impreza




Maris Egle/Aldis Egle

Audi 80




Janis Muiznieks/Kirs Tirelis

Audi 80 Quattro




Andrus Kluge/Valmar Moritz

Subaru Impreza




Jaak Pällo/Vello Õunpuu

Subaru Impreza




Helmet Palm/Kajar Valle

Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 8




Agris Pumpucs/Reinis Batarags

Mazda 323



Other two crews from Latvia got these results:



Elmars Biele/Janis Karasnieks

Peugeot 205 XS (2WDa)


93 / 4


Daniela Stipniece/Maksim Jemeljanov

Audi 90 (N)



You can download full result table here.

The next rally we are planning to attend is Saaremaa in April 21.




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