Kalle Rovanperä

Kalle Rovanperä
Kalle Rovanperä. Photo by:Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT
Date of birth01.10.2000
CountryFinland
TeamToyota Gazoo Racing
Co-driverJonne Halttunen
WRC starts68
First eventWales 2017
Victories12
First winEstonia 2021
Podiums22
Retirements5
Stage wins184
Power Stage wins18
Total points785
2023 season ranking1.
Championship wins2

Stats updated 16/05/2024

Career

Kalle Rovanperä is both Finland’s and the rally world’s brightest future promise. Rovanperä charmed people as early as 8 years old with YouTube videos showcasing his impressive driving skills in a Toyota Starlet.

Starting driving at an early age, Kalle quickly moved to compete in rally sprint races in Latvia, winning the Latvian rally series championship in the 2016 season. The year 2017 marked his final breakthrough when Rovanperä won two Finnish Rally Championship competitions and also competed in his first WRC events in the WRC2 class, driving a Ford Fiesta R5 in Wales and Australia.

In Australia, Rovanperä earned his first-ever WRC point, becoming the youngest driver to do so. At the end of the year, Rovanperä signed with the Skoda factory team. In the 2018 season, Rovanperä participated in a total of seven WRC events. His brightest achievements were victories in the WRC2 class at the Wales and Catalonia rallies. He finished second in his class in the rallies of Germany and Monte Carlo.

The 2018 season also included Rovanperä’s most severe crash when he went off the road in Argentina from the leading position. In 2019, Rovanperä competed in the new WRC2 Pro class with Skoda, focusing on the WRC rallies he had missed. Throughout the season, Rovanperä achieved five class victories and secured the WRC2 Pro class championship. He subsequently moved to Toyota, with whom he signed for the 2020-21 seasons.

In 2020, Rovanperä immediately rose to the top of the WRC in his debut season driving a WRC car. His first podium came in his second WRC race when he finished second on the snowy roads of Sweden. At the end of the 2020 season, the young Finn was fifth in the championship standings.

During the 2021 season, Rovanperä claimed his first WRC victories, celebrating first-place finishes in Estonia and Greece. He also secured a podium finish in February in Rovaniemi, finishing second, and a third-place finish in Belgium in August.

The 2022 season was a celebration for Rovanperä, with six rally wins securing the world championship as early as in New Zealand in early October. Rovanperä and his co-driver Jonne Halttunen were undoubtedly the dominators of the WRC’s first hybrid year.

In the 2023 season, Rovanperä continued to show the skills of a champion by winning three events and securing eight podium finishes. Although he didn’t accumulate as many victories as the previous season, the Finnish driver proved his maturity by performing consistently throughout the season. Rovanperä clinched his second world championship before the final race at the Central European Rally.

At the end of the 2023 season, Rovanperä dropped a bombshell by announcing he would only compete in about half of the 2024 WRC events, meaning he will not defend his title next season.

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