Robert Droogmans: “Fans prefer cars drifting”

Robert Droogmans: “Fans prefer cars drifting”

What memories do you have of your years with the Porsche 911?

“I always loved driving a Porsche, simply because it was a car designed to be a racing car. An Escort, for example, was a family car converted into a rally car. That’s why I always preferred the Porsche. My greatest memories? They are beautiful and sad at the same time: my rallies against Henri Toivonen, for example, when he was at the wheel of a Porsche as well. Or the rallies with Jean-Louis Dumont as my teammate on the Belga team. Unfortunately, that story had a sad ending.”

Huy and Namur have a rich rally history. How big are the differences between the rallies of the 80s and 90s and the rallies of today?

« Enormous. Some rallies have become fairground spectacles. Sixteen stages, what is that about? In the past, Ypres or Namur had 50 stages or more, and they were also driven at night. That is no longer possible. I am very grateful that I was able to experience those wonderful times. But that also shows my age.”

Before Rally 4 Passion, you also took part in other Festivals. What do you think is the secret of their success?

“On places where we used to have to downshift twice and get the Escort or the Porsche sideways – otherwise we wouldn’t get through the corner – drivers now go full throttle. A modern-day rally car barely steps out. But the fans would much rather see cars drifting than modern cars that go through the corners as if on rails.”