The masked “Paris-Bakar” Rally is a traditional event that has taken place continually since 1990, organized by the “Rijeka” Auto Club as a parody of the world famous rally “Paris-Dakar” (from www.rijecki-karneval.hr). This year it was on February 11.
I arrived in Rijeka on a gray, cloudy morning to see this event. I expected to bump into crowds of people taking places alongside the central street – Korzo. Instead of this, there were carnival decorations and people walking as they do on a usual summer weekend. But the steel fence, stage and some small groups of people waiting for the start showed that there should be a rally.
The whole atmosphere changed when cars started to arrive! First, second, third… Aaa they are so funny! All of them were crazy decorated, played loud music, honked, and even spread colored gas! Now Korzo was full of fun and madness and there were many more people surprised by the creativity of the Rally teams and enjoying the atmosphere. Cars stayed there for half an hour and moved to their further challenges (information about all parts of the Rally you can read on Rijeka carnival webpage www.rijecki-karneval.hr).
I was curious to see the driving skills test too so I moved to Kostrena. When cars arrived crazy carnival spirit, as in Korzo, occupied the parking place. Again, joyful people, music, honks, colored gas! Teams were making fun, joking and enjoying the moment! After this little “resting pause” the driving tests started. Drivers had to do a “snake” and reverse parking. Some guys were perfect and very quick, but some guys hit traffic cones:) Anyway, everybody had fun!
I did not see the final of the event in Bakar, I just believe it was awesome too. Those two parts of the Rally which I saw were enough for me to be glad that I woke up at 5 am to get to Rijeka on time. But to participate in this Rally as a Masked team is even much more interesting, in my opinion!
Croatia is awesome!
by Iuliia Pankrateva