The public who went to Serra da Lousã today to watch the Rally de Portugal was satisfied with the return of the event to the region, hoping it will be to maintain.
A sea of people, mostly Portuguese and middle-aged, "invaded" this morning the Serra da Lousã to watch the return to the Rally Portugal to the region of Coimbra, which also has sections in Góis and Arganil.
The return of the race took João Fonseca, from Vila Nova de Poiares, in the district of Coimbra, to take the day off so that he could see the best rally riders in the world.
"I just left my daughters at school and I came here soon," the amateur, who lives in the Central region, said to the Lusa news agency, like a good number of those who have witnessed the first moments of the seventh round of the world championship.
The 42-year-old, who started to follow the rally at 14, went to Fafe to see the race, always in the hope that he could see her again in his region.
"It's a good thing you came here. It's deserved," says João Fonseca, 42.
For Paulo Gaspar, a resident of Coimbra, returning to Serra da Lousã to see the rally is also to go back 40 years in time and remember the moments when, as a young man, he took the train to that area to spend the night waiting to see his idols, the Finns Ari Vatanen and Henri Toivonen – "the most spectacular".
Since then he has been with "the rally bug", which took him to the North and Algarve to watch the cars pass.
"It's very good to come back [o Rali de Portugal à região de Coimbra]. I am very satisfied with the return and do justice to the sections, but also to the very people who join in mass to this party, "says the 55-year-old businessman.
Fafe "is a mythical event, but Arganil is much more. [do rali] are from the Center, "Vinca Nelson Chaves, resident of Moimenta da Beira, district of Viseu, who began to see the 12-year-old Portugal Rally, accompanying his older brothers.
For this adept that was with a group of five friends, this is an opportunity "for the Center to bet on the rally", considering that, in terms of spectacle, the sections of the district of Coimbra "are among the best."
"We hope we can continue," said Nelson Chaves. "We at the Center are also capable of receiving the Rally of Portugal.
Already Peetr, from Estonia, came for the first time to Portugal because of the rally and was charmed by the country.
"The country is very beautiful and the rally sections are like in Estonia, but here they are more mountainous. It's spectacular and it's very, very good," says the Estonian, who supports compatriot Ott Tanak, runner-up in the World Rally Championship.
The passage of the rally near the small village of Vilarinho, in Lousã, filled the streets, roads and car parks of cars and caravans.
In one of the small establishments of the village, at 7:00 AM, the coffee grinder stopped working, accusing the constant requests of those who were going there.
Already in the show area, the drink of choice was beer, among the audience that made the party whenever a car passed – even the vehicles of the GNR had the right to palms and shouts.
From a cell phone to a wrist or a camera, they all tried to catch the moment when the pilots were tearing a 180-degree curve, then moving away from the stretch and protecting eyes and mouth from the immense clouds of dust.
"With or without powder, it's worth it," said one of the rally lovers.