News | 14/02/2020

2020 JWRC Rally Sweden - Event Preview

Sami Pajar's and Marko Salminen's preparations for the opening round of the 2020 JWRC class in Sweden have included, like other drivers in the series, media meetings, training on a new car and a visit to Petter Solberg's stable.

Winter's beautiful adventure of the competition is not good. In Finland, many winter rallies have been destined for a poor winter, and in the same way, Sweden's Värmland has suffered from an almost total snow shortage.

- The special test closest to the service park, Torsby Sprint, is on gravel. The two special stages on the Norwegian side, Hof-Finnskog and Finnskogen, and Nyckelvattnet, which is closest to the Norwegian border, are in pretty good winter condition. Likenäs, which runs twice on Sunday and acts as a Power Stage, its’ then everything in between, says Pajari after Wednesday's notes.

By additional order of the race organizer, the first special stage on the Karlstad racetrack has been canceled and will be run as a shakedown, where each competitor is obliged to perform at least once.

In the Swedish World Rally Championship, Pajar will use M-Sport's Ford Fiesta R2T model year 2019.

- We don't have a lot of experience with the car we will use, but we ran similar in the Finnish World Rally Championship last summer.

Schedule and route changes will also bring their own spice to the rally, also competitively.

-No one can afford to be observant here, but the momentum should be found right from the start, when there are so few special test kilometers, the mistakes will be even more highlighted at the end due to the lack of overall time.

The durability of the tires will also play an important role in the absence of a proper ice cover.

- Snow and ice as conditions would probably have been suitable for us Nordic drivers, but now that in some places we go on gravel wheels with clear gravel, then not many people have the experience or feel of it and it can change the preconceptions.

- We will start as the fifth car in our class with the number 46, Tom Kristensson from Sweden (number 42), who starts first in the class, drove to silver in the series last year, so there is at least a very possible indicator for time comparisons, Pajari concludes.