Ole Christian Veiby has shaken off the disappointment after not taking the junior world champion title this year and is pleased with having the opportunity to finish his season by competing in the WRC 2 class.
The Junior World Rally Championship (JWRC) ends at Wales Rally GB, but without Ole Christian Veiby competing in the category. Instead, he will be found in the WRC 2 class, which is the second highest level in the rally circus. The Norwegian has got the opportunity to drive a Skoda Fabia R5, and that is a chance he could not miss out on.
“My main goal this year was the JWRC and we planned to finish the season with a good result in Wales Rally GB. I have fantastic memories from winning there last year. But when I got the opportunity to participate in an R5 car, the decision was quite easy. This is a great chance, a big step forward and an investment in my future career. It has been a huge experience to do two seasons in the JWRC and the next step for me is to compete in the WRC 2. Of course I would have preferred to complete the JWRC season in Wales Rally GB as planned, but when this opportunity came up, I could not say no” explained Ole.
If he had finished the JWRC season, he would have had a good chance to defend his second place in the championship from last year as he currently holds the runner-up spot. Now he might not finish in podium position since he will not participate in the JWRC class in Wales. But first up is the WRC round in Spain this weekend.
“To go from a two wheel drive car to a four wheel drive car is a big transition. But it is not completely new to me” said Ole, who finished sixth at Rally Sweden with the same car. He has also done three events in the Finnish championship with this car.
“It is a while since last time I was behind the wheel of this car, so it felt good to have two test days last week. Rally Spain is a unique rally with gravel stages on Friday and tarmac stages on Saturday and Sunday. I have never driven a four wheel drive car on tarmac, but I think the test went great” he said.
It was actually in Spain that the youngster did his WRC debut two years ago. He also competed last year and knows what awaits him.
“I think Rally Spain is an enjoyable rally and I feel like I know it pretty well. It went really well last year and I won most stages on tarmac. To repeat that this year will be difficult. Many of my competitors in the WRC 2 have way more experience and have driven R5 cars a lot more than me. So I have no specific target other than to try to find the rhythm and set some good stage times” said Ole.
Time schedule Rally Spain 2016
Thursdag 13 October
08:00 Shakedown Salou (2,97km asphalt)
18:06 SS1 Bareclona (3,20km asphalt)
Friday 14 October
10:08 SS2 Caseres 1 (12,50km gravel)
10:36 SS3 Bot 1 (6,50km gravel)
11:11 SS4 Terra Alta 1 (38,95km gravel & asphalt)
Tyre Fitting Zone Asco
14:18 SS5 (12,50km gravel)
14:46 SS6 Bot 2 (6,50km gravel)
15:21 SS7 Terra Alta 2 (38,95km gravel & asphalt)
Saturday 15 October
08:10 SS8 Vilaplana (6,28km asphalt)
08:49 SS9 Alcover-Capafots 1(19,93km asphalt)
10:21 SS10 Querol 1 (21,26km asphalt)
11:03 SS11 El Montmell 1 (24,14km asphalt)
13:57 SS12 Alcover – Capafonts 2 (19,93km asphalt)
15:29 SS13 Querol 2 (21,26km asphalt)
16:11 SS14 El Montmell 2 (24,14km asphalt)
18:00 SS15 Salou (2,24km asphalt)
Sunday 16 October
07:24 S16 Pratdip 1 (19,30km asphalt)
08:13 SS17 Duesaigues 1 (12,10km asphalt)
10:39 SS18 Pratdip 2 (19,30km asphalt)
12:08 SS19 Duesaigues 2 PowerStage (12,10km asphalt)
Photo: Sergio Garcia