THE STORY OF 1964
The system to determine the overall winner has been adjusted again by clerk of the course Piet Nortier, to prevent the formation of combines within the class. The successfully introduced amateur class is of course maintained (90 registrations) and measures, such as sealing cylinder head and engine are being taken in order to limit the provision of service on the way by the factory teams. Furthermore, various secret technical inspections are planned along the route to determine whether the (factory) participants still drive in the same cars.
Paddy Hopkirk, the winner of the Rallye Monte Carlo, has signed up, but in the end he is absent because he prefers the preparation for the Targa Florio. Among the contenders are Erik Carlsson, the French Gréder and Delalande (the winners of last year) and Pat Carlsson-Moss. The Dutch favorites are Ben Pon, in a factory Porsche 904 GTS, Rob Slotemaker and Dries Jetten.
The route is only 2788 km long this year and the rally does not go more south than Belfort. The rally has twelve special stages (with a length of 64 km) and the special trials are being re-eintroduced (eight routes with a total length of 74 km that have to be covered with an average speed of 70 km / hour). The route through the Vosges, which is run at night, is 400 km and must be driven with an average of 60 km / hour. The route Joffre from Bitschwiller to Masevaux is the last special stage in the Vosges and this is particularly difficult. The Ballon d’Alsace is the last trial this time. For the first time since 1957, the route continues through Germany, where four trials are held. Especially in Eberbach the local authorities are very helpful. Straw bales have been placed along the route and a telephone has even been placed every 500 meters. 62 manned controls were included in the rally.
The first test, at the Belgian Circuit of Zolder, is won by Ben Pon. During the second test, at the Circuit of Francorchamps, the Brit Frank Powell with his Jaguar E-Type makes a huge shove, after which he asks’ Is there a good restaurant in the neighborhood? We surely need a drink ‘. On the third test, at La Roche, it starts to rain heavily and a number of participants get out of the way. The factory team of Alfa Romeo relaxes during the 70 minutes of rest at St. Maurice sur Moselle, as a result of which they fall back to the 16th place. Rob Slotemaker knows bad luck before the rally, when his Simca is rejected and a new engine has to be built in before he can start in another class (tuner Henk van Zalinge builds it in one night). Before the start of the Zolder’s test, the driver’s seat appears to be completely unattached, after which it is fastened again by co-driver Leen Biesheuvel with saw, hammer and nails. On the hill climb of La Roche it appears that the Simca tires are not good, after which they are changed in Sarrebourg. On the final test (Circuit van Zandvoort) the engine fails and he has to give up. There is a lot of tinkering along the way by the different teams. For example, Van der Bos and Hulsker assemble a new windscreen in their cars with a lot of tape, after the original has been fragmented. Because it rains during the rally, there is a decent layer of water in the car. Ben Pon (started as one of the favorites after his bad luck last year), has to give up in Germany with problems on the front train, after he has won the test in Eberbach.
The award ceremony and the closing party are this year on Friday evening. General winners of the rally are Timo Mäkinen and Tony Ambrose with Morris Cooper S, while the ladies Carlsson-Moss and Nyström win the Coupe des Dames. The Swedish team wins the Nations Trophy and the couple Carl and Ellen Syberg are the winners in the amateur class. The prize for the best club team goes to the K.N.A.C., with Dee-Gillissen, De Man-Aardse and Jetten-Hendrikx.