The note, showing the 49-year-old in overalls next to the words ‘Champ is Back’ and the date and logo of Rally Finland, led many to assume that he would take part in next week’s rally.
Today, however, he revealed that while he will be back in Jyvaskyla, it won’t be in the way that so many had hoped.
Instead, the four-time World Rally Champion will tackle just one stage, the Killeri Super Special, at 2000hrs on Thursday 1 August, just before the WRC competitors line up on the start line.
There’s no news on the car he will drive, but Makinen says his aim is to set a time that will challenge the WRC elite following him.
“It’s always nice to return to the track, and coming to Jyväskylä is even more special,” said Makinen. “My first WRC round win was in the Finnish round of the WRC, and after that I won it back to back several times. It’s a special feeling to drive again in front of Finnish audience. Even inside the car you can feel the sense of home.”
The star will also be in town to launch his new Tommi Makinen Racing mobile app, which gives a Makinen masterclass on how to drive some of Rally Finland’s most famous stages.
The app includes on-board footage of Makinen driving stages including Ouninpohja, Mökkiperä, Jukojärvi, Surkee and Killeri, and is overlaid with information on speed and gears, as well as tips on how to take each corner.
“The idea was to give more information to rally spectators and to guide them with the help of video footage,” Makinen explained. “Watching the rally at the stage becomes more interesting, as one can check for example driving lines of each stage, or see what are the most important and crucial aspects of each stage.”
The app is available now for Android devices, with Apple IOS and Windows versions available from 1 August. Click here for more information.