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 sporting director, approached the two star pilots with a special idea based on their two-decade acquaintance: what if they could try their hand at another discipline one day. Also on the asphalt, but beyond the fence of the built tracks, among the rally drivers! 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 rally warm-up, unfortunately “only” as a control car driver for now – but who knows what the future will bring… Secondly, we asked Gábor Wéber, two-time Ranault Clio Cup winner in Hungary, highly successful on the international stage, SRMSC World Champion, SEAT León Eurocup winner, touring car World Championship starter, what this trip to Mecsek means to him.
“An experience, a treat, a reward game, in front of an audience, but not a bloody reward game. “A rally simulation with a controlled froth”, the former Clio media champion introduces the event almost without thinking, showing off his true sports journalist side. “I’ve always loved the tarmac, mountain racing, and I’ve always had a flirtation, if only in my mind, with rallying. Pécs, Orfű, Mecsek are always close to my heart. I’ve been on the track and on the hill many times in very fast racing cars, but rallying is a new and unknown world for me! I couldn’t think of any other reason that could guarantee an exciting and enjoyable weekend, so I didn’t think twice before saying yes to Tibi Markó’s invitation” – she collects the newer and newer reasons.
And that’s not even mentioning that they won’t be showing the entire field the way, not with some kind of shopping car, but with a special Yaris GR. 270 hp, four-wheel drive, 5-second acceleration – a real racing gene optimised for the street. “I’ve never driven before, but I’ve been dying to try it ever since it came into existence. Plus, we’ll have professional navigators sitting next to us (Viktor Bán next to me), so everything is there to experience the real racing feeling. And with the feeling, also unknown to me so far, that neither the other cars nor the clock are my rivals, i.e. with no burden, a real joy ride. True, I’ve never written an itinerary in my life, so mine certainly won’t be over-coloured. Anyway, I consider myself a quick learner, so I’m just making a note of the most important points. By the way, with all due respect to my fellow drivers, especially those who dare to sit next to me, as a track pilot I have no experience of listening to others on the move; I think that in doubtful situations I will still be guided by my own eyes rather than by the guidebook,” he says, drawing an interesting parallel between what a speedway and a rally pilot looks out for in the midst of cornering combinations. Having driven countless Renault Clios and SEAT Leos to victory, he is now a well-known and deservedly popular sports reporter/commentator on MTV’s Formula 1, who is now saddling up in a similarly sized but equally biting Yaris, Gábor Wéber, who also organises a poker party for his star drivers, adds that the car is still a challenge for him because, if all goes well, they could one day form another domestic cup series. And he particularly enjoys competing in such “one-car” cups, as a driver or even as a test driver, just as he has had the chance to get a taste of the Suzuki Cup cars.