Honored workers of cinema and the service sector, war and labor veterans, masters of sports and just dudes. Do not be surprised, but we are talking about cars that entered the start of the GUM Auto Rally on Sunday. This year it passes for the third time, and the 100-kilometer route runs through the iconic places of the capital - from Red Square to VDNKh. At the start of the race - over a hundred crews on rare models, including "Pobeda", "Volga", "Moskvich" and others.
They are all machines with history. Pobeda, the first Soviet car equipped with a heater and a radio, was even exported to Western European countries. Elegant "Seagulls" served high-ranking officials and diplomats, and after retirement they went to wedding palaces. It was almost impossible to get The Seagull for personal use, but among its lucky owners were the writer Mikhail Sholokhov and the ballerina Galina Ulanova. Another cult Soviet model - "Volga" - actively acted in films, appearing on the screen in such films as "Beware of the Car", "Three Poplars on Plyushchikha" and "The Diamond Arm".
The oldest participant in the GUM-Auto Rally this time was the GAZ-A phaeton, which will turn 82 this year. But in addition to domestic cars, for the first time, “foreigners” also entered the race: sports coupes and roadsters Alfa Romeo, Ferrari and Jaguar, and even an army all-terrain vehicle.
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The legendary command off-road vehicle Willys MB was assembled in the United States in August 1944 and sent to the USSR under the lend-lease supply program. The car that had served as part of one of the units of the 2nd Belorussian Front was transferred into the possession of Marshal Konstantin Rokossovsky.
“For many years, a trouble-free SUV has been a workhorse in our family. They carried weights on it, went fishing and went to the forest to pick mushrooms, it was also used to maintain the garden and vegetable garden. Konstantin Konstantinovich always sat in front, to the right of the driver's seat. Later, we went to parades of military retro technology, and in addition, the jeep took part in the filming of several films,”said the grandson and great-granddaughter of the famous Marshal Konstantin and Ariadna Rokossovsky, who took off in carriage # 2, about the car. Last year's winners - Marat Yarullin and Yuri Korolev - were the first to enter the route. They pass one hundred kilometers on the GAZ M-20 "Pobeda" produced in 1950.
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The GUM-Auto Rally route changes every year. But the starting point remains unchanged - at the walls of GUM on Ilyinka and in Vetoshny lane. This year, at the VDNKh special stage , the participants change to bicycles and lay a cycle route through the territory of the exhibition complex. The sporting interest of the rally lies in keeping pace and navigating the terrain. It is very important, without violating the traffic rules, to be in the right place at the right moment - to the nearest second.
As in previous years, the Vacheron Constantin watch manufactory became the general partner of the event. “We have long- term friendly relations with Bosco and GUM, a historical department store in Russia. It has a long history, just like Vacheron Constantin, the oldest watch manufacture that has existed for 260 years,”said Nicolas Defler, brand manager of Vacheron Constantin. “Besides, there is one more connection. Our brand produces mechanical watches, and old hand-assembled cars have mechanical motors.” The winner of this year's rally will receive a watch and a trip to the Vacheron Constantin Geneva manufacture as a gift.
On the eve of the start, talked to the participants and organizers of the GUM-Auto Rally to find out their mood before the race and find out the secrets of the route.
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Marat Yarullin, winner of the GUM-Auto Rally 2015:
Every year you have to prepare from scratch. Therefore, we practiced the main disciplines: passing additional competitions, orienteering in Moscow, taking into account the difficult road traffic situation and repairing most of the internal highways. And, accordingly, they were preparing the car. We are planning to drive a GAZ M-20 "Pobeda" produced in 1950. We checked all the necessary components with him, paying special attention to ensuring that the car did not overheat. It is not yet clear what the weather will be like this weekend - either thunderstorms or sweltering heat.
There will be many strong rivals in this rally. Having looked at the starting list, I determined about 20 strong crews, but I would not discount all the rest. Professionals can miss out on those moments that amateurs will notice, and they can be key.
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Sergey Afanasyev, Russian racing driver:
This year I announced several crews in my cars at the GUM-Auto Rally, and I myself will go to the ZAZ-968A Zaporozhets. To practice, I completed last year's route. Last Sunday, early in the morning, I met my father, who will ride in carriage # 26 on the Seagull as a navigator, and we both went for a ride. It took us a long time, and I can say that I saw Moscow from new angles, this is a great feeling. The guys are very good at choosing routes. You look at those areas that you seem to have often visited, but saw them in a completely different way.
In general, car racing is our family business. Our whole life is connected with machines. We have been engaged in motorsport since 1998. In those years my father had his own team in circuit racing, and I did go-karting. I have a license to compete in Formula 1, and in 2013 I became the world champion in the GT category.
This year I managed to persuade my father to go to the "GUM-Auto Rally" as a navigator. I hope that next year we will form a joint crew and will fight for victory, and this year we have more or less training. In the rally, a lot depends on the team, on the weather conditions. Here, everyone's cars are equally old and equally liable to break down. This is iron, and iron has a certain limit of reliability, but domestic cars, in my opinion, are much more reliable than foreign ones. You can fix it on your knee at any time. And this charm cannot be compared with anything. I liked the way we drove on Sunday with my dad. It was exciting and interesting. And a deep bow to the organizers of such competitions, which bring together people who are sick of the same thing - cars.
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Ivan Paderin, head of the Gorkyclassic project
I cannot disclose all the details of the route. Every year we make a new one, otherwise rallies lose all meaning. This year, due to the fact that Moscow and its center are blocked, dug and dug up, we took the route to the north, towards the forest parks. And the rally acquired a somewhat different, walking paradigm. Then we will go to the north-west of Moscow, and only then, from the side of Moscow State University, will we return to the center.
In addition to the parks, the rally participants will visit VDNKh. The classic rally has never come here before, and this year we will for the first time make a special stage at the Exhibition of Achievements of the National Economy. At the same time, we understand that the movement of cars there is extremely limited, so all cars will be left at the main entrance, and participants will be offered to change to bicycles and continue the twenty-minute route through the territory of the exhibition complex, pedaling.
The rally will take place in any weather, because one and a half hundred crews are preparing for it, plus the press and spectators. This is an expected event and a celebration of retro cars. This is more of a masquerade, a show, a meeting of old friends, so the weather is not a guide to us.>