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Starts: Saturday, July 6, 2024 at 6:00:00 AM

Sat 25 Feb 2023

Kalle happy for Ott to open the road in Mexico

Kalle Rovanperä’s smile at the end of Rally Sweden said it all. The conversation had moved to round three, to Mexico and to running order.

The Toyota star starts the Guanajuato event (16 - 19 March) second on the road, just behind championship leader Ott Tänak.

“This is good,” said the 22-year-old Finn. “In Sweden, we were first on the road – we lost 30 seconds in one tricky stage that we drove twice and that time difference was basically where we ended up at the finish.

“We don’t have to do that in Mexico, we don’t have to open the road, so it should be better for us. Basically we can go there with a fresh mind and hopefully have a good rally.”

Next month’s León-based fixture will be the defending world champion’s third start in Mexico, but only his second in a top category Rally1 car.

“I’m looking forward to it,” he said. “We get to take some holiday between Sweden and Mexico and do some fun stuff, so it will be good to go there and enjoy the rally. The atmosphere is always a nice one and the roads are a big challenge.”

Should Rovanperä need any up-to-date advice on the roads around Guanajuato, he could always ask his father Harri. Rovanperä Sr starred at last year’s Rally of Nations (which used the same stages), finishing the event fifth in a Citroën DS3 R5.