Elfyn and Phil all set for Finland
The pair will start the Neste Oil Rally Finland in second place in the six-rally series and elected to compete in a round of the Finnish Rally Championship – the SM O.K Auto-Ralli – to gain valuable experience of the fast and flowing Finnish gravel roads.
The Welsh pair took Elfyn’s own Ford Fiesta R2 to Finland for the Kouvola-based event and finished second in class, just 24 seconds behind Andreas Amberg, who currently leads the class in the Finnish Championship.
I’ve always known that Finland would be really important as far as the Championship is concerned. It’s so different to Greece as it’s such a fast event and the Scandinavian drivers have so much more experience. Since it’s so easy to make a mistake, I think a fairly cautious approach is called for and so I’m planning to go at my own pace and see what the others do.
The decision to compete on a round of the Finnish Championship really paid off. We had a very good test on the Thursday and then we did everything we planned to do; we were able to try a few things and so we’re much happier with the set-up. What’s more, we know where we can improve a few things even further and so we’re now more than ready for Rally Finland.
Phil Pugh said:
The weekend has put us both in the right frame of mind for Rally Finland; you know when the locals come to talk to you that you’re doing something right!
Elfyn had a few unknowns after last year’s Rally Finland, but we are both a lot happier about the pacenotes and the car’s set-up. What’s more, our relationship is strengthening with every week that passes, whether we’re competing or not, and the job for both of us is now a lot clearer.