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Wed 09 Nov 2022

Pajari to contest full WRC2 programme in 2023

Sami Pajari has confirmed he will drive a Škoda Fabia prepared by Toksport in next year’s WRC2 series.

The youngster won the FIA Junior WRC in 2021 and returned to defend his crown this year alongside additional WRC2 outings with a Fabia Rally2. 

Although Pajari was unsuccessful in his junior title defence (he finished third in the one-make series), impressive performances in the WRC’s premier support category - including a stage win on home soil in Finland - have whet his appetite for a full assault in 2023. 

Co-driven by Enni Mälkönen, Pajari will drive a Škoda prepared by leading WRC2 team Toksport.

“What lies ahead next season sounds like a dream come true,” he said. “I’m of course thrilled and looking forward to making the most out of such an opportunity.

“There could not be a better partner for us for the future than such a wonderful and thoroughly professional team like Toksport, but there is still much work to be done this season before I can switch focus to next year,” he added.

Before switching his attention to 2023, Pajari must complete this week’s FORUM8 Rally Japan (10 - 13 November) - his first time competing at a long-haul WRC event. 

The 20-year-old has entered a Toksport Fabia Rally2 and will support team-mate Emil Lindholm, who could seal the WRC2 title at the season finale. 

“It will be an interesting event,” he said of Japan. “From what I learned from the recce, the roads are very technical - mainly narrow and rather slow. 

“Of course I’m also looking forward to seeing the local fans and their culture. I know in Japan the fans are very enthusiastic and dedicated.”