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Thu 25 Aug 2022

Solberg ‘relieved’ at Belgium result

Hyundai Motorsport youngster Oliver Solberg has talked of the relief he felt after finishing last week’s Ypres Rally Belgium.

The Swedish driver recorded a career-best result of fourth overall at the championship’s ninth round after tussling with M-Sport Ford’s Adrien Fourmaux, who crashed out of contention on the final day. 

Solberg arrived to Belgium off the back of a heartbreaking retirement at Secto Rally Finland earlier this month, where he and co-driver Elliott Edmondson rolled on the first stage on Friday. 

That crash had been playing on his mind ever since, with the i20 N driver admitting he was simply relieved to enjoy a clean, drama-free event.  

“I think it’s just a relief,” Solberg said. “Finally everything came together in one package and it was nice to just have a properly clean weekend with both the car and myself.

“We had good speed when it was needed to keep the gaps and then we just played it smart and waited for luck or misfortune, and finally we had the better side of it. It was just a super-clean weekend with no mistakes at all, no punctures, nothing,” he added.

Just days after his Finland crash, Hyundai bosses had Solberg back in a car and testing for Ypres - something he also believes provided a big confidence boost. 

“That was also important,” he admitted. “The team was really behind me and we all felt very tough after Finland. It was tough from both sides. 

“It’s not been an easy time the whole year with a lot of bad luck and also I’ve done mistakes. To finally get a weekend where you can finally trust the work and focus on yourself was fantastic.”

The 20-year-old will step aside to allow Dani Sordo into the team’s third car for EKO Acropolis Rally Greece (8 - 11 September) before returning to action for Repco Rally New Zealand later next month.

“I do not want to think about anything else but rally and I want to start working for New Zealand right away,” he laughed. 

“I think it could be a good event - it's new for everyone, which is normally good for me. I think if we get everything right into one package, hopefully we can do a good job.”

Top 5 moments: WRC Ypres Rally Belgium 2022
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