Fly­ing teenager Ro­van­pera con­tin­ues to make his­tory with win

Motor Sport News - - Rally News -

Fin­nish star Kalle Ro­van­pera made more his­tory on Satur­day, when he won the SM Vaakuna Rally on his com­pet­i­tive debut in his home coun­try.

At 16, Ro­van­pera is still two years too young to com­pete of­fi­cially. He was driv­ing his Skoda Fabia R5 on the Mikkeli event with a waiver from the Fin­nish fed­er­a­tion. He ar­rived at the start of the rally with a 100 per cent record in the Lat­vian Cham­pi­onship – win­ning two from two – and con­tin­ued that trend at home.

Slowed ini­tially by a punc­ture, the son of one-time world rally win­ner Harri Ro­van­pera bat­tled back for vic­tory, post­ing two im­pres­sive times in the dark.

“Apart from the punc­ture it was a nice day,” said Ro­van­pera Jr. “And even on a good day you tend to have some trou­bles like that. This was sim­ply a re­mark­able vic­tory for me. I am feel­ing great! The times were good when I took it steady and drove cleanly. But some­times I wanted to drive a bit wild and it showed im­me­di­ately in the times.”

Ro­van­pera beat Teemu Asun­maa, also in a Fabia R5 in sec­ond place. Mul­ti­ple Fin­nish cham­pion Juha Salo was third in his Peu­geot 208 T16, while Jarkko Nikara was fourth and top non-r5 car. The Subaru-driv­ing Finn is be­ing co-driven by Ja­panese Sayaka Adachi, who is part of the Toyota team’s train­ing scheme.

Ro­van­pera com­peted un­der a spe­cial waiver

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