Tue 17 Oct 2023

WRC2’s Zaldivar celebrates South American title glory

WRC2 regular Fabrizio Zaldivar achieved a childhood dream by winning the FIA CODASUR Rally Championship in South America last weekend.

Zaldivar, who is piloting a factory-backed Hyundai i20 N Rally2 in the FIA World Rally Championship’s WRC2 category this season, has also been competing in the FIA Codasur Rally Championship.

The 22-year-old clinched the title in the South American series by finishing fifth overall at Rally del Atlántico in Uruguay on Sunday. He won a round earlier this year in his native Paraguay as well as Brazil, and also netted a fourth-place finish at Rally Santa Cruz in Bolivia.

“It’s a dream come true,” Zaldivar said of his triumph. “This is the biggest prize I have earned as a rally driver to this day, and I’m really happy for it. We worked really, really hard and it’s been a very long year, racing a lot.

“This is maybe the biggest prize that a rally driver from South America can win, and it’s been many years that I’ve been working a lot and trying to improve and trying to get the experience to accomplish good things. By winning this championship I can say that it’s one of my biggest dreams that came alive.”

Zaldivar and co-driver Marcelo Der Ohanessian return to WRC action at next week’s Central European Rally, a brand-new event which spans stages across Germany, Austria and the Czech Republic.

While he’s no longer in contention to challenge for WRC2 championship glory his season, the Paraguayan hopes that his success on South American soil will provide an added boost of momentum moving forward.

“We have to use this momentum to try to keep improving, to try to become a faster rally driver and to try to earn good things, not just in South America but also in the WRC,” he insisted. “It’s an incredible feeling but we need to keep working.”

Images by RPM Fotografias

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