Thursday | 12 Mar 2020

Preview – WRC 3 in Mexico

Fifteen years after father Petter triumphed at Rally Guanajuato Mexico, teenage son Oliver Solberg has his sights set on a maiden WRC 3 victory over the same tough dirt mountain roads this week.

While Petter took overall victory in a Subaru Impreza, Oliver (pictured above) drives a Volkswagen Polo and is armed with plenty of advice as he bids to move to the head of the category’s championship standings.

“My dad has been telling me about a slightly different style of driving. When you can lose as much as 25 per cent of the power because we’re driving higher than 2000 metres, then you need to be much more precise in the corners,” he said.

“This is such a different rally for me, I haven’t done anything like this before. Aaron (co-driver Johnston) and I need to make really good pace notes and then just totally focus on them in the rally.

“If we can stay away from the trouble then we have seen in the past that you can make a good result. But, like I said, Mexico is about the experience and to build for the future,” added the 18-year-old.

Video: Rally Sweden - best of WRC 2 / WRC 3

All but one of Solberg’s eight rivals make their first appearance of the season. Brazil’s Paulo Nobre, driving a Skoda Fabia, lines up for the second time after starting his campaign at January’s Rallye Monte-Carlo.

Other likely front runners are Kajetan Kajetanowicz and home hero Benito Guerra, who finished second and third in last season’s WRC 2 championship. Both drive Fabias but while Guerra has plenty of Mexico experience, Kajetanowicz is here for the first time.

“Despite four Polish Rally Championship titles and three in the European Championship, we don’t know what to expect here. The stages are very complicated and run at high altitude. Thin air will make it difficult both for us and for the cars,” he explained.

Drivers from the Americas fill much of the entry. Bolivia’s Marco Bulacia (pictured below) switches to a Citroën C3 this season while there are Fabias for Mexican Ricardo Triviño and Chile’s Emilio-Andrés Fernández. Fellow Chilean Alberto Heller and Italy’s Gianuca Linari drive Ford Fiestas.