The interesting thing is that, from what I've seen, more often than not you can't make the transit times *without* speeding. Add to that the congestion from rally fan traffic and seeing rally cars 'bending' the laws here and there is not unusual. At the Swedish Rally, there was a 50+km long traffic jam that saw cars doing as many kilometres in the wrong lane, facing oncoming traffic. In argentina, where traffic laws seemed to be non-existant, the FLOW of traffic was typically 120Km/h in 80 zones (and a double solid yellow line on the road apparently means you MUST pass another car.)
Now, in a case like this is the competitor really at fault for speeding? If I tell you that you have an hour and twenty minutes to do a 50 Km transit and teh speed limit is 50 Km/hr ... sounds easy. If that same road has rally fans jaming theh road in both directions ...
Yeah. On Rally GB in 2000 several cars passed me on the narrow gravel shoulder just legging it.
There are two factors you correctly identify: naive organizers and bad conditions. In Quebec this year I think we had both. We looked at one of the transits to Parc Techno from service and we saw we would have to maintain an aveage of like 60kmh through town. So we took on enough fuel at the previous service to skip it on this one (it counts in your transit time) and had to leg it from the service out moment. Some people who hadn't done the math got halfway through and panicked and had to drive like maniacs.
Then, on the long transit down at the end of the rally, there was a severe blizzard and they were closing the highway. Traffic was moving at like 40kmh in a 90 zone. Brian did the math and told me that this average would get us into the final control late. No problem for us at the front of the rally with AWD, Michelin C5s, and proper diffs of course, so a group of six of us just pulled out and carved past everyone at about 90kmh, which wasn't unsafe for us.
Well, wouldn't you know there was a control person in that line of cars, and couldn't you guess which six or so drivers got official reprimands from CARS "to go on your file at the CARS office." I still have my letter taped on the wall here at the office - one of my best awards this year!
Andrew - What was the basis of the reprimand - driving at a safe speed as directed by the event organisers, in orderto make a time control without penalty? My response to the letter would have been less than polite ...