Østberg looks forward to mixed surfaces in Spain

Mads Østberg is back in the world rally championship coming weekend in Spain, partnered by codriver Torstein Eriksen in the Ford Fiesta WRC. The Norwegian privateer chose to drop Rally Germany in august, but now he is back in business under his new team banner Onebet Adapta World Rally Team.

-We have decided to end the cooperation with the Jipocar organisation, and run the car with our own team. It`s really nothing dramatic or sensational about that, as we have run under the Adapta banner and with our own people in the WRC before, Mads Østberg says.

Having been out of the championship since Finland in the end of July Mads is looking forward driving competitively again and to the unique character of Rally de Catalunya.

-The combination of gravel and tarmac stages is unique in the championship and definitely a special challenge connected to the driving  and the technical aspect. I hope to use my starting position for the gravel stages on Friday to my advantage. The gravel roads in Spain are medium speed and technical in character, which should suit me well. The tarmac roads are super smooth and as close to tarmac racing we experience in the WRC, and I hope to be able to show that I can be competitive also on that type of roads, Mads says.

Its two months since the last WRC event for Mads, but he has had competitive outings in the meantime. Three weeks ago he did a couple of races as a guest driver in the Swedish Porsche Carrera Championship, and with good results. Last weekend he drove the last round of the Norwegian Championship with his Fiesta WRC and Emil Axelsson as codriver. As expected he won the rally with a clear margin.

-The Porsche drive in Sweden obviously couldn`t compare with rallying, but it was valuable driving experience on tarmac. And I wasn`t too bad as a tarmac racer, really! The rally in Norway was used as a gravel test, and we had very good progression trying different set-ups during the day. The rally also gave me the chance to have Emil Axelsson in the car with me, as we are still evaluating different codriver choices for next year, Mads says.

Rally RACC Catalunya Rally de Espana is based in the holiday resort Salou, south of Barcelona. The rally opens Friday with six special stages totalling 115 km, of which appr. 95 km is gravel roads. The longest stage during the day, Terra Alta, has some tarmac parts and will be a challenge with the mixed surfaces on a nearly 40 km long stage.

Saturday and Sunday is run exclusively  on fast and smooth tarmac roads, seven stages totalling 122 km on the Saturday and a further six stages for 75 km on Sunday . SS19 Santa Marina 2 is the final stage with «power stage» bonus points. The rally finishes at 14.00 in Salou.

Photo: DRT Rallyphoto 

Opprettet  : Monday, October 2, 2017 av Annelene Østberg
Sist endret  : Tuesday, October 3, 2017 av Annelene Østberg