Wed 08 Mar 2023

Linnamäe ramps up schedule with WRC2 preparation in mind

Estonian WRC2 driver Georg Linnamäe will continue to tackle a selection of national and European Rally Championship rounds as he levels his learning curve with the Hyundai i20 N Rally2 he’s using this season.

The 24-year-old will be in action at this weekend’s ERC opener, Rally Serras de Fafe (10 - 12 March), as part of his preparation for Vodafone Rally de Portugal later in the season. As well as taking advantage of the opportunity for mileage in the Hyundai, he’s interested to gauge his pace against a racy ERC field.

Linnamäe switched to the RedGrey squad for 2023, replacing his Volkswagen Polo R5 with an i20 N Rally2 after three seasons aboard the German machine.

After finishing fourth in WRC2 at last month’s Rally Sweden, he admitted he was coming to terms with the new car.

“The cars are quite different in their philosophy,” he said. “Both have their strong points, it’s like every new car, it just takes some time to get used to.

“One thing which definitely helps is seat time in the new car. That’s what Fafe is about as well, getting more experience [with the Hyundai]. It’s also going to be interesting to see ERC this year, like WRC2, it’s looking really strong.”

Linnamäe admitted he is looking for a hike in pace by the middle of the season.

“I want to be up to speed quickly,” he said. “I have some experience for the rallies now and I want to bring some strong results – maybe halfway through the season is a good time when I’m more used to the car and the rallies suit me a little bit more.”

Other WRC2 stars in action at the ERC's season opener include Josh McErlean, Erik Cais and Fabrizio Zaldivar, while top-level driver Craig Breen has also entered in a Hyundai i20 N Rally2. 

Latvia
Starts: Thursday, July 18, 2024 at 4:31:00 AM
Italy
Starts: Friday, July 26, 2024 at 7:00:00 AM
Hungary
Starts: Saturday, July 27, 2024 at 6:00:00 AM