The 3rd battle of Mesen

The 3rd battle of MesenFrom Rally Ypres [ 18/06/2017 ].
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On the 7th June Prince William was a guest in Mesen. Together with the Irish Premier Enda Kenny and the Belgian Princess Astrid the renowned mine battle near Mesen was commemorated. On the 7th June 1917 the Irish and the British, Catholics and Protestants, for the first time fought side by side at the front. On that day a genial plan was executed. Via tunnels the British troops had placed 19 depth mines under the German lines which were then exploded. At that time, it was the biggest artificial earthquake in history, and the craters in the landscape are still a silent witness of the heroic deeds on that historic day.

On Saturday the 24th June the Irish and British will once again give the best of themselves in Mesen, but this time around in a far more enjoyable context, the Ypres Rally. The Mesen special stage, on the Ypres Rally menu to be run twice on Saturday, is entirely renewed. The first section of the stage is especially beautiful, with a show part on the Markt in the centre of Mesen. Following that the competitors head off for the well-known small roads of the Middelhoek, known to many teams as the ideal test terrain to learn the cutting in technique.

The splitting of the Hollebeke stage into two parts, whereby the second part is run under the Zillebeke name, is another important novelty. However, the biggest renewal is the return of a classic, because upon special request from the council authorities the Ypres Rally will kick-off on Friday with the Zonnebe special stage. Zonnebeke is known of old, but one needs to go back to the year 2007, the last time an Ypres stage was run there. At that time Freddy Loix, Mister Ypres, and Nicolas Vouilloz were the fastest. Curious to see who this year will be the fastest opener over the 9,90 km of Zonnebeke.