It now seems doubtful whether any of the 302 starters in this year's Monte Carlo Rally which began on Jan 21st will reach the finish on time.
It now seems doubtful whether any of the 302 starters in this year's Monte Carlo Rally which began on Jan 21st will reach the finish on time. Hard-packed snow and ice covers almost the whole of France and each hour takes toll of further competitors - either with crashes or irretrievable loss of precious time.
In the event of no-one reaching Monte Carlo on time, this rally will have created a record as the only one of the series in which no-one has finished with a 'clean slate'.
In an around Puy, for instance, these pictures show the kind of hazards which face the drivers. Ever on the alert, they must 'feel' their cars around the corners, wary of the 'drift' (sideways slide of the wheels) and the obstacle obscured by snow.
Nevertheless, the stalwarts still arrive at the Puy checkpoint, to have their papers checked and signed. A quick look around the car, and off again into the nerve-wracking drive.