Is Jari-Matti Latvala getting tired of modern day World Rally Cars and their sophisticated features and clever technology? Is he looking for new challenges in old school rear wheel drive cars? I highly doubt either is the case – I’d say he is just so deeply in love with the sport and he is just taking every available opportunity to enjoy it. And what better way to have some fun and break the all-WRC driving routine than to sit behind the wheel of one of the legendary machines and do some historic rallying.
What follows is official announcement of Latvala’s participation in historic Rally Estonia with Ford Escort RS.
Back to the roots? Yes you can say that, as Ford factory driver Jari-Matti Latvala will compete two weeks before Neste Oil Rally Finland in auto24 Rally Estonia Historic held on 20-21th of July.
Jari-Matti who is known as a Historic rally fan will drive rear-wheel drive Ford Escort RS BDA, prepared by Latvala Motorsport. His co-driver is Asko Sairanen. Jari-Matti has been to Historic events before too.
He and Asko Sairanen have won the Lahti Historic Rally twice with Ford Escort.
Jari-Matti’s Ford Escort was built in Finland in 2009 and rebuilt in Latvala Motorsport in 2012. It has 2-litre engine which produces 287 bhp. Jari Latvala’s car is Mitsubishi Lancer EVO 3 replica. The base for this car was original factory car used by Tommi Mäkinen in Rally Acropolis 1996 (MRE M6). Latvala Motorsport started to build this car in 2010. Engine, transmission and turbo are from the factory car and also lot of other solutions are copied from the factory car. It is now a complete Group A car with modern suspension and electronics.
Jari-Matti´s father, Jari Latvala, competed in auto24 Rally Estonia Historic last year. He took the victory of the candidate rally for European Championship with Ford Escort RS. Jari Latvala will compete in Estonia this year again but not in Historic rally. He will drive 4WD Mitsubishi Lancer EVO 3. As father Jari has competed in Estonia several times, for Jari-Matti this is the second start in Estonia. First time was in 2003 winter rally with Toyota Corolla WRC when he was only 17 years old.
Jari-Matti Latvala: „The winter rally in 2003 was my first international victory. I have good memories from that, organizing was brilliant and stages were great. This year I am having a free time during auto24 Rally Estonia and as a fan of Historic rally it gives me a chance to participate in auto24 Rally Estonia Historic with Ford Escort RS BDA from Latvala Motorsport. I’m very excited to come to this famous rally!“
auto 24 Rally Estonia 2012 is held on 20-21th of July. It is the round of Estonian, Latvian, Baltic and NEZ Rally Championships and for the first time a round of FIA Historic European Sporting Rally Championship. More information: www.rallyestonia.ee