Hot on the heels of the Rally Poland, World Rally Championship competitors are already preparing for the eighth round of the WRC, the Rally Finland. This rally takes place from 28th to 31st July in and around the city of Jyväskylä, located right in the centre of Finland, about two hours from the nearest major city, Tampere. It is a gravel event which will comprise of 24 special stages over three legs and a total of 333km of competitive distance.

The rally will start on Thursday evening with the Harju street stage in Jyväskylä. With Jyväskylä being a huge rallying city and home to a large university, this means big crowds and a great atmosphere can be expected.

Pontus Tidemand / Emil Axelsson, ŠKODA Fabia R5, ŠKODA Motorsport. Rally Finland 2015
Pontus Tidemand / Emil Axelsson, ŠKODA Fabia R5, ŠKODA Motorsport. Rally Finland 2015

On Friday, the teams will head west into the Finnish forests, where they will take on some well-known challenges including Mökkiperä and Jukojärvi. Saturday will see the teams move south to the Jämsä region and will also include Ouninpohja – the most famous stage in Finnish rallying.

Finally, on Sunday, teams will go south-east on routes which haven’t been used in the event for almost twenty years. Throughout the rally, they will tackle roads which are mostly hard, wide and quick, but there are more than few sections thrown in to catch them out.

The Rally Finland is traditionally a hugely fast rally, which has led to it being dubbed ‘the Finnish Grand Prix’ by some, and it is an interesting fact that nine of the ten fastest ever WRC rallies have been held in Finland.

The high speeds throughout the event mean that the time differences between cars are always small and there is a huge amount of pressure on the co-drivers. They must have perfect notes and ensure these are delivered with split-second accuracy to allow the driver to perform to his maximum. Even the smallest of errors can be the difference between one or even more places at the finish.

2016-07-19-Rally-Finland-Icons-01-en

The Rally Finland is traditionally a hugely fast rally, which has led to it being dubbed ‘the Finnish Grand Prix’ by some, and it is an interesting fact that nine of the ten fastest ever WRC rallies have been held in Finland.

The high speeds throughout the event mean that the time differences between cars are always small and there is a huge amount of pressure on the co-drivers. They must have perfect notes and ensure these are delivered with split-second accuracy to allow the driver to perform to his maximum. Even the smallest of errors can be the difference between one or even more places at the finish.

 

Esapekka Lappi / Janne Ferm & Pontus Tidemand / Emil Axelsson, Rally Finland 2015
Esapekka Lappi / Janne Ferm & Pontus Tidemand / Emil Axelsson, Rally Finland 2015

Last year, the ŠKODA Fabia R5 excelled here, with ŠKODA Motorsport’s Esapekka Lappi / Janne Ferm winning in the WRC2 category, while teammate Pontus Tidemand, along with then co-driver Emil Axelsson, finished a close second.

Both drivers return this year and – along with a number of ŠKODA customer teams – will be working hard to put the ŠKODA Fabia R5 on top of the WRC2 podium for a sixth successive round of the World Rally Championship.

 

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