Tuesday | 30 Jun 2020

Rovanperä learns lessons for 2021

Toyota Gazoo Racing’s teenage sensation Kalle Rovanperä is confident of taking a step forward in speed next season.

The 19-year-old Finn has surprised himself with how quickly he has settled into his Yaris this year, but he’s confident there’s more to come.

“I can be much better in many places,” said the Jyväskylä star who sits fourth in the WRC points. “I have also been doing good stages already and I feel I can use the car in some places in the maximum pace, but so many places I can use it more. Hopefully next season we can do [this speed] all the time and we can be faster.

“There have been many places where I need to drive more with the car to know what it does. We didn’t do so much testing before the start of the season and a lot of time, there has been some testing in the rallies.

“It’s always a little bit difficult when you are learning new things in the stages. But this is not a big factor, the car is easy to drive.

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“There will be so many new places and new situations this year – it’s [taking] confidence and experience from those [that’s important] and being up to speed all the time.”

Rovanperä’s third place, when he edged six-time world champion team-mate Sébastien Ogier off the podium with his maiden Wolf Power Stage win, at Rally Sweden was an immediate demonstration of his speed.

The former WRC 2 Pro title winner admits he was taken aback at how quickly he was able to get up to speed – and stay there – with the Yaris.

“I was bit surprised I can still control my driving with new car and [run at a] much higher pace. This was really nice to see and I’m happy to see I have been controlling and not pushing when I don’t need to. It’s so important to learn and get the kilometres this year,” he added.

Video: WRC Onboard of the Week - Turkey 2019