The route is usually published in advance, and the Wales Rally GB is known for spectator-friendly stages. Stages like Sweet Lamb often have sections that are purpose-built for spectators, it’s kind of a natural amphitheatre. But if you know where the rally will be and when (and the route is usually published well in advance), you can often plan your route in advance. Just be warned that Rally GB has a remote start – although based in Cardiff, this year’s event started at the Great Orme, which is about as far away as you can get from Cardiff whilst still being in Wales. Standing in the middle of a freezing Welsh forest in the dead of night, unable to see anything for the thick blanket of fog that covers everything for the chance to be splattered by cold mud as a rally car tears past (and you will often have no idea who it was) might not sound like much fun, but it’s all part of the appeal and it’s pretty much the same everywhere (Rally Australia was a case of marinating in your own sweat and being harrassed by blowflies in between being regularly coated with a thick layer of red dust). Try and find Petter Solberg’s fans if you can – they’re a lot of fun, even if they’re too drunk to pay attention to the rally.
If you can’t do Wales, the Rally France-Alsace might be a better option. It’s based out of Strasbourg, and it’s centrally-located. So too the Rally of Germany, out of Trier. They might be tarmac events, but don’t let that stop you; they are wildly different. France is run on narrow, fast municipal roads, often broken up by slower sections through villages. Germany, on the other hand, weaves through vineyards and often uses old German Army proving grounds where they used to test tanks, so the roads are lined with cubic-metre blocks of reinforced concrete and the surface is mostly broken tarmac over low-grade road base.
Failing that, try the Rally of Ireland on the IRC. The IRC might be for S2000-class cars, but they’re pretty nippy even if they don’t have same throaty roar of a WRC-spec car. It’s much earlier in the year, so it might be the best option if you only have a spare weekend somewhere.