Ott Tänak on the start of Estonia in the ERC

For the Baltic event (July 5-7), Ott Tänak and his co-driver Martin Järveoja will drive a Hyundai Rally1 hybrid. If they are out of the ranking, they will offer a spectacle to the public and above all they will prepare Latvia and Finland.

Published on 07/06/2024 à 22:34

Loïc ROCCI

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Ott Tänak on the start of Estonia in the ERC

Ott Tänak will race in Estonia in the ERC with the i20 Rally1 and thus be able to prepare for the fast rounds to come (Photo: Nikos Katikis/DPPI)

This season, for the first time since 2016, the rally of Estonia is on the calendar of theERC. Registered in WRC between 2020 and 2023, this meeting lost its place after the reduction of the State's financial involvement. Estonia was replaced by neighboring Latvia (July 18-21). Logically, next year, the events will do the exchange in the other direction.

The Estonian organizers will still benefit from the presence of the 2019 world champion. The latter will not be there as a tourist. It will operate a Hyundai i20 Rally1 and he will be able to take advantage of the 14 special stages and the 187,79 km timed to prepare well for the two following rounds, Latvia and Finland (August 1-4).

« Our first three or four rallies in 2024 lacked speed and stability, explained Ott. Then it started to go better and the last few races were more positive. Let's see what the rest of the year has in store for us. Our sport is fundamentally about adrenaline and action. That's what the fans love. Rally Estonia has been innovating for many years and has always been an example. I felt a strong emotion during our victory in 2020. Afterwards, for several reasons, it did not always work. I hope to reverse this trend to win again. »

Before joining the world calendar in 2020, Estonia had served as a preparation race for Finland and the organizers had even transformed their course by building artificial bumps. Hyundai's choice to field Ott is completely understandable. It’s HIS test, the appeal will be massive. However, shouldn't it also have been necessary to engage Thierry Neuville who is still the leader of the championship so that he can also practice his skills on these boulevards? Doesn't he need it even more than Ott? During the last editions, the welcome from the fans had been very careful and it will be the same this year. In order for them to be able to attend a perfectly successful show, it would be necessary that Toyota et M-Sport decide to make the trip in July. “ Lootus on igavene ”, as they say in Estonian… hope gives life.

Loïc ROCCI

Journalist specializing in rallying past, present and future... and with a southern accent

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