9. May 2000, Istanbul to Bolu
The drive today was relatively relaxed with one exception: On our way to Hacimusalar, we first went the official route and then decided to go for a short-cut. This is allowed practice under the rally regulations. Unfortunately our decision to turn around came too late and we lost a minute. It was still the right decision as most of those who went the official route lost even more time.
The Turkish countryside showed itself from its best side as summer has only started and everything is still green (in late summer grass tends to dry out). We went up mountains again and our final destination was the lake of Abant in the district of Bolu which is a popular resort with some skiing close by.
The roads had some reasonable damage and there was some construction going on. Some of the areas we drove through today had been struck by the earthquake last year but we could not see any signs of it other then the replacement houses of those who were fortunate enough to survive. But we were told that in areas such as Düzce there is still a lot of damage. Médecins sans frontières were one of the first international teams to help after the earthquake (see link).
Overall 25 minutes penalty