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Arctic Midnight Sun

Congratulations to everyone who took part in and completed Arctic Midnight Sun 2024


The overall winners of Arctic Midnight Sun 2024 are:

1. Filip Engelen (BE) & Ann Gillis (BE) - 1974 Porsche Targa

2. Peter Morton (GB) & Louise Morton (GB) - 1973 BMW 2002

3. Jan Malmgren (SE) & Hannes Malmgren (SE) - 1973 Mercedes 350 SL R107

The Route

Watch the Highlights


Read the Latest Rally Reports



Final Day Report

Geilo. Sunrise at 4.21

The uninitiated might think that in a long motorsport competition such as this, the fate of the classification has already been decided by the many completed challenges and that the last day of the event is a kind of formality to arrive at the finish line, already knowing at least who will be on the first three steps of the podium, without the classification changing significantly. However, this is rarely the case in a regularity rally, where, as the name suggests, consistency is rewarded, but even a serious mistake is hardly forgiven. So when the Clerk of the Course, instead of keeping the competition to a minimum, put his foot down and provided for three regularities and one test in 520 km, it is easy to imagine that the tension was palpable at breakfast this morning, although the fresh, clean mountain air helped to keep the minds clear and the nerves steady.

Our final day started off with a manoeuvrability test at Dagali airport, surrounded by the pine tree forest. Both Filip Engelen's ability to drive fast and Ann Gillis' ability to steer him correctly for the cone progression allowed Car 20 to win the stage in 1.42 sec (increasing their lead in the final standings), followed by the Mortons in Car 18 in 1.45 sec and the Bacons in Car 21 in 1.49 sec (their best performance). Unfortunately, the test (or rather the wrong approach to the A cone) cost the Lejeune / Chavy crew in Car 7 third place overall and they finished the rally in seventh place.

The first regularity of the day was a steady climb in forest, with some hairpins, just to keep in the abit, up to the plateau near the Sønstevatnreservoir, where the flat moors offered a stunning 360° view, under a benevolent and sunny sky.

The following stretch of road to get to the morning halt was as varied in terms of landscape, altitude, vegetation and road surface as can be found in little more than an hour's drive. Passing from the alpine Viken county to the Vestofld og Telemark, the road became so flat and straight that could have been mistaken for the runway at Dagali airport this morning, before dropping down among trees to Tessungdalen valley floor and up again, to be alone in the green and silent nature; when the surface turned then into tarmac, it was like being one more time in Sweden! Afterwards, an enjoyable scenic twisty road over the Vegglifjell mountain and down to the Numedalen Valley, where the traditional village of Veggli hosted the Time Control 14.2, where, sitting in a pleasant 26°C dehor, the rally crowd began to express a mixture of emotions ranging from eagerness to get to Oslo, to anxiety about the result, to nostalgia at the end of the event. Special guests and official marshals of the Time Control were the Norwegian couple, well known in the HERO-ERA rally world, consisting of driver Agnete Segalstad and her navigator husband Ole Rasmus Robak.

The last 2 regularities of the day and the whole event, one before and one after lunch, seemed to be designed to break the monotony of the Route 40 and to give the teams a hard time along un uphill road through tree plantations, trying one last time to move up or stay put.

It was not long before the sights, sounds and traffic of Oslo started to appear and we reached a mid afternoon conclusion to this wonderful event on the water’s edge in Oslo. The final arch was erected on Tjuvholmen allé, the pedestrian bridge in front of our 5-star hotel 'The Thief' (whose original name comes from the days when the area was a port frequented by smugglers and criminals), where on Saturday afternoon tourists and friends and relatives of the Norwegian and Swedish crews turned out in force to welcome the tired but happy competitors. All 21 cars that left Gothenburg arrived in Oslo! There was some suspense about third place, but a glass of champagne offered to all and a view of the city from the rooftop on the ninth floor, eased the excitement of the final stage of the competition.

The official winners of the Arctic Midnight Night Rally were Filip and Ann Engelen in Car 20 Porsche Targa (total penalty 11:11 sec), the 'anomalous' Belgian couple who, instead of bricks (as a famous motto about this people says), have an engine in place of the heart and who take part in rallies to travel all over the world; in second place Peter and Louise Morton in Car 18 BMW 2002 (total penalty 11: 26 sec), an always smiling and enthusiastic couple who, with a great sense of sportsmanship, have recognised the superiority of the Engelen's (with whom they have been competing since the New Zealand Rally in 2020, when, as Peter jokes, they beat them by 3 days and 17 hours!); in third place the outsiders (but not too much, having already successfully participated in the Adriatic Adventure in 2019) father and son Jan and Hannes Malmgren in Car 19 Mercedes 350 SL R107 (total penalty 13:24 sec).

I don't think I'm misrepresenting the thinking of the participants when I say that the success of the event (because it was a success) was the rewarding knowledge of two incredible countries and the spirit of camaraderie and conviviality that was created not only between the competitors, but also between them and the entire organising team.

After 14 days, crews have tackled 40 regularities, 2 Arctic Circle crossings and 6 tests over the course of the 5200 kms route.

Takk Norge. Takk Sverige. Det var en sann nytelse.


Oslo. Sunset at 22.25

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