Defending Finnish champion makes debut in ERC- “I won’t take pressure from the placing”

Teemu Asunmaa will compete in this weekend's Rally Estonia.
Teemu Asunmaa
Teemu Asunmaa. Photo: Merita Mäkinen/Meritapix
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The three-day event marks the debut of the Skoda Motorsport Finland driver in the European Rally Championship. The high level of competition does not affect the reigning Finnish champion’s preparation, as the aim is to drive a quality race for himself.

“The ERC has a high level, there’s no denying that. The drivers competing in the championship also have more experience with the series format and events, but in the end, we’re all on the same line,” says Asunmaa.

“My personal goal is to drive a good race for myself with as few mistakes as possible. I won’t take pressure from the placing, but of course, the goals always have to be high when going to compete.”

Although Asunmaa has a lot of experience on Baltic rally roads, Rally Estonia is only the second competition in the southern neighbour’s territory for him. The Skoda driver emphasises the importance of reconnaissance in the nearly 190-kilometre race.

“The roads in Estonia are similar to those in Finland, the road surface is a bit different, and the ruts will be deeper on the second run. However, the roads in the Otepää area are hard-based enough that the differences to domestic roads are small. Reconnaissance plays a big role here as the roads are unfamiliar to me,” describes Asunmaa.

The upcoming weekend’s competition is the last major event before the season’s main event, Rally Finland.

“Rally Estonia fits well into our schedule, falling around the midpoint between the Pohjanmaa SM Rally and Rally Finland. And the ERC has to be experienced at some point,” laughs Asunmaa.

Rally Estonia takes place in the Otepää area from 5th to 7th July. The competition includes 14 special stages and 187.64 special stage kilometres.

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