Antony Warmbold: "I'm going to attack from the very first corner" For the third time in his young career in the World Rally Championship (WRC) German Ford driver Antony Warmbold will contest the Rally of Finland (4 to 7 August). Before the tenth...
Antony Warmbold: "I'm going to attack from the very first corner"
For the third time in his young career in the World Rally Championship (WRC) German Ford driver Antony Warmbold will contest the Rally of Finland (4 to 7 August). Before the tenth of a total of 16 WRC rounds Warmbold, together with his British co-driver Michal Orr, completed a gravel test in Finland.
"We're very well prepared," said the professional rally driver, who celebrated his 27th birthday on 28 July. "We tested in Finland for half a day and worked out a good set-up for the rally." That is why Warmbold used the shakedown test on Thursday before the start to the rally for merely two short laps to check the functions of the 300-hp Ford Focus RS WRC. "In the first run we were quicker than Henning Solberg and Roman Kresta," Warmbold said, obviously pleased. "Since the very soft ground of the test track was developing deeper and deeper grooves as the morning went on, thus being rather untypical of the rally's stages, we completed a second session and then finished the shakedown."
Warmbold is looking forward to the Finland Rally's 21 demanding and extremely fast gravel stages with eager anticipation. "From the very first corner on Friday, I'm going to give everything," he plans, because after the merely 2.06-kilometre spectators' stage on Thursday evening, the rally will start with the Lankamaa special stage - a true classic - on Friday morning. The nearly 25-kilometre special stage of Lankamaa is arguably the most difficult one of the entire rally, it's very technical," Warmbold explains. "You can lose a lot of time there, that's why I'm going to attack there."
Warmbold will be competing in Finland for as much as the third time. "Unfortunately, I retired in 2003 and 2004, that's why I've never driven some of the special stages at a competitive pace. On these stages, I probably won't be very quick," the German explains.
He does not dare to venture any prediction regarding a result: "I'm hoping for a good finish, but the competition is very strong. There are more than 25 World Rally cars competing, including many strong Finnish drivers who have a home advantage on these quick and flowing legs with lots of hill-jumps."
The Rally of Finland is scheduled to start today (Thursday) at 7 p.m. local time with a spectators' stage in Jyvaskyla. The first special stage is on the agenda on Friday morning at 8.51 a.m. local time. On Sunday, 7 August, the cars are expected to arrive at the finish at 2.50 p.m.