The latest discovery from the vast Duke Video archive library is a double feature of epic ice racing and European rallying. Between 1970 and 2003 at the foot of Mont Blanc in the French Alps, an entirely different form of après-ski took place each year in the form of a 24-Hour ice race - the “Grand Prix de Chamonix”. Consisting of six races over a weekend, the 1990 event attracted a host of top drivers from all forms of motorsport and regulations allowed entry of a rare and exciting mix of powerful machinery.
From the World of rallycross came Terje Schie, sharing a Group B Peugeot 205 T16 with circuit racer Phillipe Gache and reigning World Sportscar champion Jean-Louis Schlesser piloted a Lancia Delta Integrale 16v. Stars from rallying included Stig Blomqvist (Ford RS200) and Ari Vatanen (BMW M3 4X4) and from Formula One came 1989 F3000 Champion, frenchmen Jean Alesi (Peugeot 205 T16). After 24 hours of sideways winter action, it was reigning champions Jean-Pierre Malcher and co-pilot Francois Chauche (BMW 325IX) who took the victory.
The second of our films features the 33rd Boucles de Spa Rally in Belgium, a round of the 1990 European drivers Championship. In the absence of Patrick Snijers the favourite for the win was Bruno Saby at the wheel of a Lancia Delta Integrale 16v. Stiff competition came from local ace Grégoire de Mevius (Prodrive BMW M3 E30), Marc Duez (Ford Sierra RS Cosworth) and Renaud Verreydt (Toyota Celica GT-4) but it was the frenchman Bruno Saby who set the pace from the first super special stage of the opening leg, dancing his Integrale through the corners with power and poise in equal measure.
There’s plenty of in-car action to enjoy with Marc Duez at the wheel of the impressive Ford Sierra Cosworth, wowing the vast crowds that lined the stages, echoing scenes from the madness of the Group B era. And although though Bruno Saby went on to dominate the rally, winning by over two minutes, there was an epic battle of the Belgians for the remaining podium positions between Duez, de Mervius and Verrydt throughout the event.