Two excellent track racers will also be in the field – or rather in front of it. Norbert Kiss and Gábor Wéber are respected by all motorsport enthusiasts as excellent drivers and sportsmen, and have proven their talent in several cup series. Tibor Markó, the competition’s sports director, approached the two star drivers with a special idea based on their two-decade acquaintance: how about trying their hand at another sport, including rallying. Also on asphalt, but beyond the fence of the built tracks, in a new, unfamiliar but exciting terrain. “Speeding” ahead of the field, in an environment where they could fully experience the thrill of the race, yet without the pressure of opponents and stopwatches! And if you’re going to be a goose, make it fat! Thanks to another friendly contact, Gábor Jagadics, and because GR Motorsport was receptive to the idea and helped to make it a reality, this time they can take the wheel of a small, angry Toyota Yaris GR; as a warm-up for rallying, unfortunately “only” as a control car driver for the time being – but who knows what the future will bring…
First of all, the man who, like Gábor Wéber, had once taken off in the Astra Cup, later fought a big battle with him in the domestic Renault Clio Cup, then won the domestic SEAT León Cup just before him, and later went on to win the Spanish SEAT León Super Cup, and finally, Norbert Kiss, who won the championship trophy four times with several brands in the Kaminon Eb, and was elected Hungarian Driver of the Year in 2020, was asked what this trip to Mecsek means to him. At the time of writing, he was still on the eve of the Hungaroring race, still in the mood for a “slightly” bigger car, but with one eye on Pécs.
“Although I have never had the opportunity to try it before, I have always been interested in the world of rallying, and I have watched it from a far, so I was very happy when Tibi Markó approached me with this interesting opportunity” – he immediately revealed another similarity with his former rival, Gábor Wéber, who also declared himself a “secret rally fan”. “As a warm-up, the Toyota Yaris GR provided by Gábor Jagadics will be perfect, a small race car with 270 horsepower, but more than enough for a “control race”, since there is no real race this time; well, I would like to beat Gábor, of course” – he says, but the fact that he has no official number painted on the side of the car does not make his blood run cold on a race track and in a race car. “I’ve already had the chance to test this Yaris GR, on the road and on a closed circuit at an airport in slightly more “open” conditions, and I really liked it, it’s small, agile, sporty, it’s going to be a great companion, it’s where it will really come to life. I’m happy to have a long weekend friendship with it now,” he says, listing the car’s good qualities.
“Yes, as much as I am looking forward to it, I have some questions, because I have never made a rally guide in my life and I have never had a navigator dictate the pace, but I am sure that Lajos Juszku and I will get in tune very quickly. On the other hand, although on the track I am used to learn quickly by heart, the rally with its hundreds of kilometres and many more corner combinations and obstacles is completely different, so here the driver obviously needs and needs a pre-written guide. Although I have done a lot of rallying in the simulator, and the machine tells me how to use it, I will be curious to see how it works in real life. All in all, I am preparing for a real driving experience, and I hope that many spectators will come to the Mecsek serpentine track and enjoy the same great experiences as the drivers at this famous and prestigious race.”