Abbring, a 23-year-old rising talent from the Netherlands, hasn’t appeared in the FIA World Rally Championship since crashing in shakedown for Vodafone Rally de Portugal in late March. However, he’s undertaken reconnaissance for the bulk of the events since then as he looks to build his experience for the future.
Last season, Abbring took Super 2000 class honours in Wales on his first appearance for Volkswagen, which is assessing the Dutchman as a potential factory driver for seasons to come. He plans to build on that success and his class triumph on Rallye Monte-Carlo back in January when Rally GB fires into action on Friday morning.
“Wales was my first rally for Volkswagen Motorsport last year,” said Abbring, who will be co-driven by Belgian Frederic Miclotte. “The rally won’t be a walk in the park; the special stages are tricky. In addition, the distances between the special stages are very long and, accordingly, so are the days. My heart beats for rally racing and these are the types of challenges I’m looking forward to.”
Volkswagen Motorsport will field a second Fabia on the Cardiff-based event for team leader Sebastien Ogier. The Frenchman, 28, has claimed seven S2000 division wins already this season but will face strong opposition from several Super 2000 World Rally Championship regulars in Wales.