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ADAC Eifel Rallye Festival 2017 – Winter magic

Over the past few years for one weekend in summer, the Vulkaneifel market town of Daun has become a site of pilgrimage for rally aficionados. Fans from all parts of Europe come to visit the spectacular ADAC Eifel Rallye Festival - a demonstration event for famous historic rally cars and their replications all running on special stages in proper rally conditions. Now for a change, this modest town located just 20 kms south of the Nürburgring has attracted one hundred and forty rally drivers during the winter. They drove to the snow-capped mountains for the annual Winter Meeting of the 'Slowly Sideways' group which provides most of the cars participating in the Eifel Rallye Festival.

While the cars stayed in their heated garages, their drivers met to discuss the new season and look behind the scenes of the Eifel Rallye Festival. The Winter Meeting started in the Cinema of Daun located within the Rally Mile which, later this year, will host up to 170 rally cars and thousands of spectators between July 20th to 22nd. Specially for the occasion, the cinema broadcasted the German version of Helmut Deimel's latest film "Group B - Riding Balls of Fire" with the film-maker himself in the audience. "It has always been a dream for me to have one of my films shown in a cinema and it was really special to see it on a big screen. It made the action of the Group B cars twice as spectacular", said Deimel who recorded some of the interviews used in the film during the Eifel Rallye Festival here in Daun. The audience seemed to have liked the film a lot, judging from the applause afterwards.

After the film, long-time Chief Organiser, Peter Schlömer, and his successor Otmar Anschütz, who will take over his role for the 2017 event, gave insights into the organisational challenges involved in running an event such as the Eifel Rallye Festival. They explained why work on the 2017 edition already started in the autumn of 2016 and how they recruit and handle the more than 700 volunteers needed to run the Festival. And they also revealed a date that was eagerly anticipated by the Slowly Sideways community: The opening date for the entry list which will be on March 1st, 2017.

But the rally drivers did not just take a look at the Eifel Rallye Festival. World famous photographer Reinhard Klein, the head of Slowly Sideways, also presented the other events that will be attended by his group during 2017. These are in six different countries across Europe. Apart from the Eifel Rallye Festival, the calendar includes events such as the Rallye Festival Trasmiera in Northern Spain and the Vosges Rallye Festival in Eastern France.

"All of our events have one shared goal: They give our drivers and co-drivers the opportunity to show and demonstrate their precious classic rally cars without the pressure of time-keeping and competition", said Reinhard Klein. "Or as our long-time friend Björn Waldegård put it when he came to the Eifel for the very first time: 'We as rally people do not drive against each other, we drive with each other.'"

And that is exactly what will happen again during the seventh edition of the Eifel Rallye Festival which is held from July 20th to 22nd, 2017.

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