Wednesday | 10 Aug 2022

Pardo pleased with ERC progress

Team MRF Tyres star Javier Pardo is satisfied with the progress he’s made since joining the ERC’s top-flight at the beginning of this season.

Pardo graduated into the ERC’s leading category after being crowned ERC2 champion in 2021 with Suzuki Team Ibérica, which now runs two cars for Joan Vinyes and Alberto Monarri. 

His season got off to a flying start with fourth overall at Rally Serras de Fafe - Felgueiras - Cabreira e Boticas and he joined MRF’s Škoda Fabia Rally2 squad from Poland onwards. So far, the Spaniard has finished every single rally and only been outside the top 10 on one occasion. 

Pardo finished seventh overall in his latest outing at Rally di Roma Capitale and told FIAERC.com that, while there is still room for improvement, he has been pleased with progress so far. 

“Rome was only my first rally driving on Tarmac with MRF Tyres, so I needed to take some time to understand the tyres and how they work,” he explained. “I still have a lot to learn but I was very proud of the improvements myself and my co-driver made. 

Pardo joined MRF's squad in Poland

“This season, the competition is definitely on a different level. Last year I could drive without pressure and if I braked in one corner or something like this, it didn’t really matter. Now, that’s not possible - you have to be flat-out in every corner. 

“It’s really important to be consistent in every stage,” he continued. “That’s good for me, because I can see the improvements coming in every stage of every rally. Tarmac is not really my preferred surface, but I can see that I am doing a good job so far.”

Pardo - currently fourth in standings - was delighted when he found out RallyRACC Catalunya-Costa Daurada (20 - 22 October) would host the final round of this year’s championship.

He prefers gravel surface rallies

But, while the 25-year-old will compete in front of his native fans, he actually lives on the opposite side of Spain to the rally’s Salou base and played down his expectations for the event. 

“For me it is great news of course,” he said. “This year I can’t win anything in terms of the championship but I will try to fight for a great result. 

“It will be my first time competing in this rally and I will need to adapt and get used to it. I know it’s a very difficult event and there will be a lot of drivers there who have more experience.”

Before Spain, Pardo heads to the Czech Republic for Barum Czech Rally Zlín (26 - 28 August). There, he is expected to join fellow Team MRF Tyres drivers Efrén Llarena, Norbert Herczig and Simone Campedelli.