Oliver Solberg kicks off WRC2 title bid with victory for Skoda

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After competing Rallye Monte-Carlo without being registered for WRC2 points, Oliver Solberg won the category at Rally Sweden. Driving for Škoda Motorsport supported team Toksport WRT, the 22-year-old Swede and British co-driver Elliott Edmondson were fastest in WRC2 on eleven of the 18 stages on snow and ice covered roads in the Umeå region.

Oliver Solberg stormed into the WRC2 lead with fastest time in the opening show stage “Umeå Sprint” on Thursday evening and never looked back. After the first leg, the son of former FIA World Rally Champion Petter Solberg had already an advantage of roughly 30 seconds over the opposition. On Friday evening the Toksport WRT run Škoda Fabia RS Rally2 was even listed as third overall – a coup, no other WRC2 crew had pulled off in the history of the world championship after a proper day of rallying. “Third place in a Rally2 car is incredible and in my home rally it’s a bit of a dream,” Solberg commented.

During the seven stages of Saturday, Solberg/Edmondson extended their WRC2 lead to more than one minute. Although they couldn’t hold on to the impressive third place in the overall standings, the Swedish-British duo’s dominance in WRC2 was never threatened throughout the event’s longest day. „The lead is now so big, I just enjoy the driving,“ Solberg revealed, who had already taken some risks out of his strategy.

With only three stages finishing off the second WRC round on Sunday, Oliver Solberg and Elliott Edmondson could have taken it even more easy. But just to make a point, the Toksport WRT crew started into the event’s final leg with another fastest WRC2 time and also won the very last test. At the finish, their margin over second placed Finns Sami Pajari/Enni Mälkönen was nearly 1:20 minutes. “Amazing. What a weekend,” Solberg beamed at the finish. “With so many people, so much atmosphere. Family and friends have been here. Winning like this is amazing.”

With the Sweden victory, Oliver Solberg takes over the joint overall WRC2 lead. He shares top position with Frenchman Yohan Rossel, who won the category at Rallye Monte-Carlo but didn’t compete in Sweden.