Best Rally Jumps

Best Rally Jumps: Four Iconic Stages Make You Love WRC

The FIA World Rally Championship challenges drivers to pass through all of the difficult combinations.  Dusty shadows, prickly road surface, tricky puddles, and, of course, rally jumps. Aside from the strategy and skill required to drive a rally car, jumping is the hardest part. Even professional rally car drivers cannot handle it. It could break both the car and the drivers. Old rally fans know every iconic stage and the round. Honestly, every pinned country in WRC’ calendar is their legendary and that’s true. Our adventure takes you high at the best rally jumps in the most spectacular locations. Because here it’s pretty clear that rally racing is one of the craziest sports. We guarantee you will fall in love with the FIA World Rally Championship!  

Attention! Please do not try to repeat. All the racing jumps are done by professional rally drivers who have the most experience in the World Rally Championship. 

FIA World Rally Championship and rally fans’safety.

Since the FIA World Rally Championship started in 1973, the high jumps have been the most spectacular event. Therefore, you may ask – “if these are so dangerous and high risking, then why do rally cars still jump so high through the route?”

The case is that rally jumps are a necessary part of any WRC competition. We are stepping into nature in places like Sweden, Portugal, Rally Safari or Paviljonki’s area in Finland. These closed roads are natural, with ups and downs. So, no wonder the car can go flat out so easily. As it is so close to rally fans, it may cause injury at high speeds.

To take care of the rally car, the driver must keep his mind cool own. And in some terms it is about organizers. Jumps are very high risk for the spectators, who sit or stand so close to the drama. 

Therefore, all journalists and photographers have to undergo mandatory training before they can become accredited. It applies to every WRC event, no matter where you go. Before taking a “press card” on Rally at any pitch all over the world, be sure you’ve made the attention to all the rules of conduct.

The most dangerous Rallies

Do you wonder why at the moment when rally cars rush through the stage you may hear a very loud whistle? Put a pause on any stream and just listen. Figured?

Spectators are also provided with recommendations prior to the WRC rally racing event. Information flows to every point: tickets, posters, subscriptions. Althought, these have never stopped the braves from greeting their favorites in the middle of the road. Therefore to control all of the action is the toughest task for the marshals, as it is impossible to keep track of everyone, no matter how they try. 

Even the asphalted stages like the WRC Germany or Belgium or the Rally Catalunya are also somewhat risky for rally fans. The story reccalls the most problematic rounds. 

Consequently, some stages of rally racing in Mexico have been stopped by red flags due to safety concerns. Due to the slick roads, the Rally Monte Carlo is the third. Among the most dangerous rallies are those in Portugal and Argentina. 

Safety and fans’ behavior are the most problematic topics for the organizers of Portugal’s challenge because the event is the most popular in the country. The FIA’s Women in Motorsport president, Michèle Mouton, had been noticing improvements in safety since 2015. Everywhere you look, there are special signs and posters. 

Poster on Rally Portugal
Poster on Rally Portugal

In 2022 WRC season

But the risk of rally car crashes is not just about the stages above only. Hence, at a highly respected Rally Finland, the SS5 was red-flagged even before national hero Kalle Rovanperä had time to accelerate. Due to safety concerns, the Lankamaa 2 leg has been cancelled, and Michèle Mouton, as part of the FIA delegation, has rushed to inspect the issue. 

Rally Finland SS5, Kalle Rovanperä, photo dredit: dirtfish.com
Rally Finland SS5, Kalle Rovanperä, photo dredit: dirtfish.com

The foggy and wet conditions of Rally Croatia 2022, in addition to its narrow roads, made it one of the most dangerous rallies in the WRC 2022 season

But weather conditions like the route of any rally are temporary things as they could change from year to year.

Additionally, there are really dangerous zones with incredibly high jumps. So, whatever the weather or the daytime, these fields are craziest enough to make you out of mind. 

Iconic WRC Stages with crazy rally jumps

"Those who don't jump never fly"

Impressive Colin’s crest jump at the Rally Sweden! 

Although Colin’s crest jump seems to be overlooked in most cases, this is incorrect as it has an iconic view as well as being named in honor of the 1995 World Champion. Colin McRae was the most legendary rally driver. His fans from all over the world still remember him as their hero and respect him deeply. After McRae’s tragic death in a helicopter crash in 2007, rally organizers set out to find a way to honor the Scottish champion.

Thus, since 2009 organizers of the Rally Sweden have presented the special Award to the driver who jumps furthest from the huge crest. 

Every year, the commission measures how far each driver flies over the crest. The winner receives the special Colin’s Crest Award. This has a special significance for racers. It means honor and glory and almost equates to the victory at the Rally Sweden in some terms! And this is with good reason. Just look at the flying rally cars at this place. 

The area is located near the end of the Vargåsen stage of Rally Sweden. Colin’s Crest is an enormously gnarly jump, the most spectacular.

Mads Østberg Colin's Crest jump, photo credit: wrc.com
Mads Østberg Colin’s Crest jump, photo credit: wrc.com

Colin’s Crest jump records

Despite its slightly inaccessible location, which requires a long walk or a 4WD, Skruvat Colin’s Crest Arena is the most popular spectator area of Rally Sweden. It brings together almost 10,000 more or less crazy fans, making it one of the most awesome experiences in WRC. The stage area is one of iconic. And it sets in our list of the best rally jumps in the FIA World Rally Championship. 

Hence, if you are wondering how rally cars fly, just check out the Colin’s Crest jump on the Rally Sweden and you will see the incredible power. 

The drivers jump over 35 metres here. The top three are headed by Thierry Neuville, who made a rally jump here over 44 metres in 2015, and Mads Østberg, who repeated this distance in 2017. Imagine, it is more than 57 steps! Nonetheless, the record holder of Colin’s Crest is Eyvind Brynildsen, who jumped for 45 metres here in 2016. The record is still unbeatable. 

Eyvind Brynildsen Colin's Crest jump, photo credit: wrc.com
Eyvind Brynildsen Colin’s Crest jump, photo credit: wrc.com
Colin’s Crest longest rally car jumps

2008, Khalid al Qassimi, 36 m
2009, Inget rally
2010, Marius Aasen, 37 m
2011, Ken Block, 37 m
2012, Ott Tänak, 32 m
2013, Thierry Neuville, 35 m
2014, Juho Hänninen, 36 m
2015, Thierry Neuville, 44 m
2016, Eyvind Brynildsen, 45 m
2017, Mads Østberg, 44 m
2018, Mads Østberg, 42 m
2019, Kris Meeke – 41 m

Fafe Jump at the Rally Portugal, photo credit; wrc.com
Fafe Jump at the Rally Portugal, photo credit; wrc.com

The Craziest Fafe Jump at the Rally Portugal.

You could describe the Fafe stage as madness. Every time a rally car jumps here, the crowds are wowed by the impossible things happening. So no wonder that we pinned Rally Portugal is one of the most dangerous rallies in the FIA WRC. 

The Fafe area wasn’t so crazy when it was included in the Rally Portugal in 1974. But when the crest was completed in 1984, rally fans saw the first ever Fafe jump. 

The round is technically challenging due to the demanding conditions such as complex corners after crests, high temperatures and a rocky surface. The Fafe jump is that it is the most iconic spectator area in our top four of the best raly jumps. 

At once Michèle Mouton said the time when spectators sat calmly and watched the rally show had passed. Today everyone wants to feel the rush of adrenaline and take better pictures with their phone. Rally Portugal’s Achilles heel is therefore safety. 

Therefore, the Fafe stage has also been transformed. However, new hybrid rally1 cars with upgraded suspension technology and travel make rally car jumps even higher and longer

Fafe jump records.

These are high, very high. Rally cars jump at Fafe in Rally Portugal for more than 30 metres. Eight time FIA WRC champion Sébastien Ogier heads the top drivers who made rally car flys in this area. In 2017 he reached 32 metres. While Mads Østberg kinged and jumped his Ford Fiesta for 36 metres in the same year. 

However, the Fafe jump record holder is still on top. Armin Schwarz made the longest distance ever jumped by a rally car at Fafe with a jump of 73.5 meters in 2000 year. Imagine, it is nearly the length of a football pitch!

Rally Finland, photo credit: wrc.com
Rally Finland, photo credit: wrc.com

Rally Finland – Ruuhimäki jumps to make rally car fly

The crazy rally jumps are all about Rally Finland. The route is literally all about jumps and trampolines: from high to low.  

It is also one of the fastest rallies, taking us deep into the forest to watch rally cars jump near the spectacular lake scenery. Another reason why it has the original name – Rally of the Thousand Lakes. Also Rally Finland had another non official name – “place where rally cars are flying”.

This rally service park is traditionally based in Jyväskylä, Finland’s third largest city, 270km north of the capital Helsinki. However, here is the one place where the magic happens. Thus Ruuhimäki is the most spectacular stage, where rally jumps are higher than at any other place in the world. Here are the following evidence why this iconic stage is on our top.

Rally Finland longest jump

Google has plenty of information about the absolute records of rally jumps in Finland. However, most of them are incorrect. We rechecked all the data, twice. 

Thus, in 2015 Markko Martin jumped with his Ford Focus RS WRC rally car for 57 metres. Since then, no one has been able to beat the record until these days. Although, Thierry Neuville sent his Hyunday I20 Hybrid Rally1 car for the biggest jump ever, he didn’t since there were only 2 metres left before the absolute record.

Adrien Fourmaux is a record holder as he made Rally Finland’s longest jump ever at 68 meters in 2021.

That is incredible! 

Before the weekend drivers know that car suspensions will be challenging. It must therefore be set in the best way possible. Otherwise the vehicle will be damaged. Sometimes cars are flying so high that it is possible to see the bottom of the car. Someone, like WRCwings, already has insights into rally cars’ aerodynamics, because Rally Finland is like the visual aid.

Mickey's Jump, photo credit: wrc.com
Mickey’s Jump, photo credit: wrc.com

Unpredictable Monte Lerno Mickey’s Jump at the Rally Italia Sardegna 

The Italian round of the World Rally Championship is always an amazing event with plenty of sun and atmosphere. But, there is a place where rally cars fly and it has the name – “Monte Lerno”.  

Michelle Carta created Mickey’s Jump in 2005. Moving to Sardinia was challenging as it was not an easy task to impress rally fans after the previous Rally Sanremo. There was a need to create something really spectacular that could raise the appreciation of fans and critics.  

Manager Carlo Cassina and Michele Carta defined the section between Sa Conchedda and Su Filigosu, which passes through Monte Lerno. They took the brainstorm.

Want some spectacle?” – replied the Manager of Ente Forestale Michele Carta to Cassina. Carta knew that zone more than anybody else. He had worked there for a long time and worked to the itinerary of ‘83 and ‘84 Rally Costa Smeralda.

 “When Cassina came to me I already clearly pictured that jump in my head.”

told Michele Carta fifteen years later.

Micky combined passion for motorsport with the love for his land to deliver a distinctive feature of the stage. And the unknown “foreman” stage from Sardinia came to the fore a few years later with the name “Micky”. That is how Micky’s jump was born.   

The “Micky’s Jump” of Monte Lerno is now a legend of the Rally Italia Sardegna, one of the most exciting stages of the World Rally Championship. 

Thierry Neuville jumping on Rally Sardegna, photo credit wrc.com

What’s the key feature of Micky’s Jump?

Here, photographers always keep the lens focused on this area. Micky’s Jump is characterized by the fact that not every jump ends well. The jump is very tricky as it climbs up very steeply and comes down very steeply. What happens is that drivers kick and land on the nose and then they have corner.

“You can’t go flat – that is the first thing. The second thing is that you have to little bit pick up the line.”

Jari-Matti Latvala

Jari-Matti Latvala, the current Toyota Gazoo Racing team principal and former rally driver, knows about Italian Micky’s jump challenge well. As the corner after the jump requires the driver to hard brake, he is convinced that following the special strategy will be key. Full throttle is the quickest way to crash. 

Another key is that there is no visibility. When drivers reach the top, they can only see the sky. Rally jumps here reach about 20 meters on average. However, it is not the place for records and the best record here is to keep save the car after the corner. 

These are the reasons Micky’s jump is one of the most iconic stages with the best rally jumps. 

What is the world record rally car jump?

When it comes to rally jumping world records, Adrien Fourmaux, Mads Østberg and Eyvind Brynildsen have to move when the real masters jump. Here’s the wonder. 

Former freestyle motocross and rally racing legend Travis Pastrana jumped 269 feet in his rally car in 2010 from the Pine Street Pier onto a barge anchored in Long Beach harbor. That was an incredible 82 meters and yes, that was a legendary Subaru GL. But… It was more like a show than a race, in some ways. Although, that was a fantastic show!

Nevertheless, the title of having the longest rally car jump went to Sébastien Loeb a few months later after Travis Pastrana. In 2010, Sébastien Loeb’s Citroen C4 took off and jumped 85 meters at Rally Turkey SS20 Balika.

The gravity-defying moment, which the drivers refer to as “big air,” is what distinguishes rallying from other motorsports that seek to keep the cars firmly planted on the ground. Although it is not Sébastien Loeb’s official record, it is marked as the longest jump in WRC history!

Rally car’s jump crash: the most dangerous stage

Every rally jump is about potential risk for the car, team and rally fans. We previously discussed the most dangerous rallies. Thus, Micky’s jump in the top. The stage with the most crashes is led by Portugal’s Fafe. No one Rally Portugal is complete without a flat out on Fafe.

Who is the best jumper among rally drivers?

Of course we could pin Sebastien Loeb as the king of rally jumps due to his 85 metres record in Turkey. But it wouldn’t be correct. Only a few rally drivers these days can handle rally jumps on A grade.

The case is about Mads Østberg and Kalle Rovanperä.

Mads Østberg’ jumps are always very high. He doesn’t hesitate to take risks and go full throttle. That is the reason why he is on the list of record holders in Finland, Sweden.

No matter how high Kalle Rovanperä jumps, he always controls the car and keeps his mind at ease. Therefore, most of his jumps are good, i.e. without damage to the car.

Rally car's jump crash on Rally Italia Sardegna, photo credit wrc.com

What’s the secret of the best rally jumps?

There are few keys to making a rally jump successful. It takes only seconds between perfect rally car acrobatics in the air and destroying the vehicle into hundreds of pieces. These seconds started before the crest.

Kalle Rovanperä described the following key moments of the best rally jump.

  • Keep the image of jumping in your mind
  • Brake before the crest, not accelerate
  • Accelerate when the car leaves the ground
  • Steer straight when the rally car jumps
  • Be ready for the impact.

If the driver did everything right, then the impact wouldn’t be serious. It’s not just the driver who feels the power of high rally jumping in a bad way. The rally car struggles the most. The Insider published detailed insight on how compact cars can jump football fields in rally races.  

Sums Up

Rally jumps are a necessary part of the FIA World Rally Championship. This makes the sport spectacular and adds a magical element to it. In addition, rally jumps are dangerous for drivers, cars, and race fans. The most dangerous rallies are in Portugal, Mexico and Argentina because of the safety reasons. Lately the list has expanded with Estonia, Croatia and Finland. 

We found four iconic stages with the best rally jumps among the many different stages. Colin’s crest in Sweden, Fafe in Portugal, Ruuhimäki in Finland and Micky’s jump in Italy are in the top.

Some rally drivers aim for 40 – 60-metre jumps. The cars are literally flying. Although it was Sebastien Loeb who took the record for the longest rally jump, at 85 metres. Anyway, the best rally jump requires a special skill, professional strategy to pass it well, as there are many cases when jumps end in a crash. Kalle Rovanperä’s advice only proves the point. 

Taking off the risks, it’s pretty clear that Rally racing is the sport for the bravest. These drivers’ nerves from steel. As every time when we see rally car jumping it becomes clear how craziest WRC sport is.