WRC codrivers = what kind of driving talent do they have?

edkwon

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Here's a question thats prob been asked several times already, but codrivers for top flight level rally drivers (e.g. WRC class), i've always wondered what level of driving ability they're required to have despite not driving at ALL in the competitions they participate in. And have there been any drivers/codrivers whove crossed over to the other seat? either codrivers becoming drivers or vice versa?
 

Hazardous

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Back in the golden days of rallying (up to seventies) codrivers did quite a bit of driving in longer events where the road sections between timed stages were long, while the drivers would catch some rest to keep themselves sharp. Back then it was not rare to see crews with nominated co-driver actually being a top-line driver in his own right.

These days things are different, though, and as the sport has evolved such acts are no longer needed (and propably wouldn't be allowed either, though I'm not sure about that one). I'm fairly certain very few of the current WRC co-drivers could make good results even on national level if they were moved to behind the wheel. A few years ago Marcus Gr?nholm and his co-driver Timo Rautiainen swapped seats for a TV feature(They were at Ford at a time, so it's '06 or '07), and Timo's driving on that occasion was about on par with any random person getting to drive a WRC car on any promotional event.
 

Viper007Bond

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Hazardous: not surprising, but then again, that doesn't downplay their skills. Not anyone can be a talented co-driver and when you're looking for a co-driver, you look for a talented... well, co-driver and not a racer, hence their poor skills.
 

Hazardous

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True, I was not trying to downplay their skills in what they do in any way. I have tremendous respect towards co-drivers because they do their valuable work in extreme pressure and any mistake on the stages will cost at least time, possibly championship points and in worst case a serious injury. It's nice to see that codrivers in general have been getting more attention recent years in rallying media.

And on top of that you need to have 100% trust at the guy on the driver's seat and generally get along with the fella who takes all the fame, which is no mean feat in itself :lol:
 

Viper007Bond

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True, I was not trying to downplay their skills in what they do in any way.
Oh I know. :)

And on top of that you need to have 100% trust at the guy on the driver's seat and generally get along with the fella who takes all the fame, which is no mean feat in itself :lol:
Especially considering they're looking down at their piece of paper half the time! I'd get scared shitless if I was going 100 MPH through trees while not even seeing what's coming. :eek:
 

ruuman

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I don't see why they don't just have computer driven pace notes.
Co drivers do a hell of a lot more than just read the notes, good example is this:

[YOUTUBE]http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=3-lQ8ZSWCIo[/YOUTUBE]
 

Flynn

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Yes I am aware of that but their primary purpose is to read the notes that is what they were designed for they could save money having a computer read them out :D Okay, the whole thing was a parody of the F.I.A.s "cost cutting" measures ;)
 

jack_christie

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I don't see why they don't just have computer driven pace notes.
Would want to be some computer to take instructions from driver to modify notes for next run on the stages while blasting down a stage at 100mph+.

A big part of the co-drivers job is all the work done before the rally. As well as making notes, they have to check out the altenative road book (where you go when stage is blocked), service scheduling/management, organise fuel stops and how much fuel to put in, learn event rules, manage a moutain of paperwork, etc...

Reading the notes is a skill that few can do properly, you have to tell the driver how fast to go and you need to be able to tell him to slow if going to fast. Last year in Rally Ireland before Marcus crashed, Timo had told him to slow down but he didn't listen...
 

anto-t

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Us co-drivers can be good drivers :p but funds wouldent mean we can afford to rally.

Co-drivers can still drive the rally cars on the road sections ( i got the insurance this year so i can now drive the rally car on road sections) BUT the driver cant just fall asleep they will have to navigate to the next stage or end of day halt...

Co-drivers dont just read pacenotes... they are the ones who have to get the car to the next stage, or into service.. they have to work to a time schedule and if you arrive even 5 seconds early to a time control you get a 15 second penalty..
you have to know all the rules and have a steady head to make sure you get to the end of the rally :)

Ive just made a dvd of how to co-drive that has gone into the edit suite ill post it here and show you what it is all about :)
 

NooDle

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Co drivers do a hell of a lot more than just read the notes, good example is this:

[YOUTUBE]http://uk.youtube.com/watch?v=3-lQ8ZSWCIo[/YOUTUBE]
^that is epic.
Just imagine whizzing down a dirt road at 100 mph+ while your passenger reassembles your steering column...

wtf would they have done if it had come off?? :blink:
 

fbc

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^ Or from the passenger's perspective, imagine whizzing down a dirt road at 100mph+ and the driver say the steering wheel is loose...
 

Nikodemus

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^that is epic.
Just imagine whizzing down a dirt road at 100 mph+ while your passenger reassembles your steering column...

wtf would they have done if it had come off?? :blink:
There are so many stories like that. I've heard one of Kankkunen made his codriver use throttle wire by pulling it by hand when it somehow broke and pedal stopped working.

In couple of the most recent rallying accidents codriver has been the one injured more severely/killed. It's because they sit low, can't see and prepare for the crash.

I think the rule of having only driver's name on the window is downplaying codrivers' importance. When the rule was announced Peugeot put Timo Rautiainen's name on the metal just under the window.

crap! totally OT
 

NooDle

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I think the rule of having only driver's name on the window is downplaying codrivers' importance. When the rule was announced Peugeot put Timo Rautiainen's name on the metal just under the window.

crap! totally OT
Hey I didn't know they left off codrivers names? Thats just lame and pointless. They're as much part of the result as the actual driver is...
 

P5138

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Well, as for driving talent in Co-Drivers: IIRC when he first started participated in rallies (on a national level), Tommi Makinen was a co-driver.
 
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