Sat 02 Dec 2023

Where Rovanperä got it right in 2023

Clearly, winning three rounds of the championship was a good place to start, but time and again this season it seemed to be the 23-year-old’s rebound ability that helped deliver him a second successive title.

The start of his season couldn’t have been more different to last year. Where he couldn’t stop winning in 2022, he couldn’t buy a victory at the top of ’23. Three successive fourth places – his longest run off the podium in more than a year – were not what he was after in terms of the start of a successful title defence. 

But then he bounced back in Portugal. Reeking of champagne for the first time in months, the champ couldn’t help but smile.

In his own words, “We’re back!”

And back they were. Then there was the disappointment at missing out on an ultra-close fight for a maiden Safari win. Just 6.7s separated him from the sister Yaris of Toyota team-mate Sébastien Ogier who lifted the win.

One month and one round later, a Kalle masterclass in Estonia. Couple of weeks and just across the sea, Finland and a huge desire to win at home. Instead, disappointment and visit to the trees.

Bounce back? Absolutely. The Acropolis had Rovanperä written all over it. More recently, tyre misery in Chile gave way to title celebrations at Central European Rally.

See? All about the rebound.

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