Rally cars covered in mud while speeding through the forest with tough competition – that is what awaits at the Brittish WRC event Wales Rally GB this weekend. SKODA Motorsport’s Pontus Tidemand comes to Wales as WRC 2 champion and is eager to finish his season in the best way possible.
Wales Rally GB is the last of the three compulsory events for the WRC 2 category during 2017. That means exceptionally tough competition when all drivers compete for the prestigious podium positions. Pontus Tidemand made his first start in Wales last year but still managed to impress as he finished second in his class.
“It will be really fun to come back to Wales. With all the drivers competing, it will be tough, but that is the way it should be. We feel 100% ready after a good test and thorough preparations. Last year we had a close battle for second place with Teemu Suninen all the way to the very last stage where we managed to beat him. This year I’m hoping for a just as exciting fight that brings out the best in all of us” said Pontus, who, along with his co-driver, decided the WRC 2 championship in his SKODA Fabia R5 already in Germany in August.
Charachteristic for the Brittish WRC rally is the muddy roads that make the fast forest stages treacherous even though they are not the most technically demanding in the series. The unpredictable weather with rain and fog as well as ice increases the challenge and with constantly changing grip, it is easy to make a mistake. 21 special stages of more than 300 kilometers will be run during the four competitive days and it all starts with a new opening stage at Tir Prince trotting track. Friday’s programme includes classic stages like Myherin, Sweet Lamb and Hafren with only a tyre change in the afternoon. On Saturday awaits the longest day of the event, both time and distance wise and it ends with two stages in the dark while the five last stages will be driven on Sunday.
“Our target is to finish this fantastic season in a good way and challenge our competitors” said Pontus. “It is all about staying confident, quickly finding the rhythm and mix in with the top fight from start, even in tricky conditions.”
This time, Pontus is joined by his EVEN Management colleague Ole Christian Veiby, who also competes for SKODA Motorsport this weekend. Both Scandinavians are ready to fight to give the team the best possible end to this year’s WRC 2 series.