Ole Christian Veiby is eager to defend his championship lead at the third round of the FIA Asia-Pacific Rally Championship this weekend. The Malaysian event is a brand new experience and the youngster admits that he is not entirely sure what awaits him.
“This is going to be a special rally. It’s rainy season down here and it’s said that when it’s raining, this is one of the most difficult events in the world. The surface is more or less mud and the rain makes the roads crazily slippery. I have never driven in such conditions” said Ole.
The Skoda Motorsport driver came to Malaysia on Monday with his co-driver Stig Rune Skjærmoen in order to acclimatize ahead of the event.
“Another challenge is the heat and the high humidity. I’ve heard that drivers simply have fainted because they have become dehydrated. We have a plan for how to be as prepared as possible for what awaits us and will use the days before the rally to drink, eat and train properly” he said.
Ole looks forward to a small test on Wednesday to get to know the muddy surface a bit better. The reconnaissance takes place on Thursday and on Friday evening, the first of 14 stages kicks off. The event is wrapped up on Sunday morning local time.
“As it’s a whole new rally for me, I want to take it stage by stage and get to know the conditions. I think this will be the toughest event in the championship for me” he said.
After two rounds, Ole is in the overall APRC championship lead and the 21-year-old admits that goal of the weekend is to strengthen his lead – even if he knows that it will be hard.
“To stay in the overall lead I think I have to beat my team-mate Gaurav Gill. But that might be tough.
“He has done this rally several times and has lots of experience from driving in similar conditions. My goal is still to beat him” said Ole Christian Veiby, who leads by two points over his Indian team-mate after winning the previous round in Australia and finishing second in the opening round in New Zealand.
International Rally of Johor – Malaysia 11–13 August 2017
Time schedule (CET -6h)
Friday 11 August
20:45 SS1 Johor Circuit (2,64km)
Saturday 12 August
09:27 SS2 Tai Tak – Nursery HQ (31,67km)
10:23 SS3 Tai Tak – Pipeline (25,95km)
11:01 SS4 Tai Tak – Fish Pond (19,90km)
Service Johor Circuit
14:24 SS5 Tai Tak – Nursery HQ (31,67km)
15:20 SS6 Tai Tak – Pipeline (25,95km)
15:58 SS7 Tai Tak – Fish Pond (19,90km)
17:31 SS8 Johor Circuit (2,64km)
Sunday 13 August
08:07 SS9 Tai Tak – Court House (11,98km)
08:30 SS10 Tai Tak – Lukut (12,21km)
08:59 SS11 Tai Tak – Mawai (13,93km)
Service Johor Circuit
12:32 SS12 Tai Tak – Court House (11,98km)
12:55 SS13 Tai Tak – Lukut (12,21km)
13:24 SS14 Tai Tak – Mawai (13,93km)