Monday | 22 Jun 2020

Suninen savours Finland's diamond

Finland’s Ouninpohja speed test is one of the jewels in the WRC’s crown – an iconic stage full of crests and flowing corners where only the brave prosper and a magnet for fans who flock to the famous Kakaristo hairpin.

The special atmosphere is not lost on M-Sport Ford driver Teemu Suninen, who admits the excitement of the watching spectators there is experienced inside the car.

“The fans are a really big thing in Finland. I have to say it’s like one of the few places where you can hear the cheering inside the car and that’s the place I have been in Kakaristo junction, which is part of the legendary Ouninpohja stage,” he said.

“It’s the only place where I’ve been a little bit struggling to focus because we can hear the cheering in the car and you’re thinking ‘what’s happening? what’s this noise?’ That’s a really great and nice feeling for us,” Suninen recalls in an interview for our WRC Favourites series.

View from the service park: Finland testing

View from the service park: ...

Finland. Ah, Finland. Tupla, Karjala and lots of lupins in the never-ending sunshine. For those not in the know, lupins are those ...

Read More

The Finnish fixture tops Suninen’s list of favourite WRC rounds but, more surprisingly, it’s not the classic Ouninpohja which the 26-year-old names as his top test.

“I feel that my pace notes are fitting well for Rally Finland, so it’s so natural for me to drive over all the crests and put all the crests in the pace notes,” he said.

“It’s a rally where we need to be flat out and on the limit from the first corner. It’s great to be in the air a long time and have long jumps and to be like part of the car.

“I would say my favourite stage is Pihlijakoski. The reason is that it’s quite technical. It’s not the fastest one but there is something happening all the time, like really fast, short corners, with really short distances, so drivers need to be really awake from the first corner,” he added.

Video: WRC Favourites - Teemu Suninen

Suninen also talks about his longing to drive a Group B car in the interview, which you can enjoy in the video above.

You can discover which rallies, cars and stages light up today’s other WRC stars in a special WRC Favourites programme now available on WRC+. Click here to watch.