Tue 15 Mar 2022

Michelin-equipped Pardo proves his talent in ERC

Javier Pardo created a strong impression on his step up to Rally2 level when he finished Rally Serras de Fafe - Felgueiras - Cabreira e Boticas as the leading ERC-Michelin Talent Factory member.

Pardo, the ERC2 champion from 2021, clocked two fastest stage times on his way to fourth overall on the 2022 FIA European Rally Championship opener.

It was the 25-year-old’s first appearance in a Skoda Fabia Rally2 on an event complicated by the challenging weather conditions that materialised during both legs in northern Portugal.

“The first day was very hard with the conditions but we went with a lot of calm and no mistakes,” said Pardo, who was co-driven by fellow Spaniard Adrián Pérez. “On the second day it was possible to drive more fast and this is what we did. I am very happy.”

Of his stage-winning performance, Pardo added: “It was possible by going flat out all the time in the stage. The time was good, but the stage conditions made it possible to drive very, very fast. I felt very good in the car and very comfortable, confident of course. It was a big satisfaction.”

While Pardo enjoyed a strong Rally Serras de Fafe - Felgueiras - Cabreira e Boticas, fellow ERC-Michelin Talent Factory members Erik Cais and Simone Tempestini were both forced to retire due to damage sustained in separate incidents on the event-deciding Power Stage.

ERC-Michelin Talent Factory explained

Launched for the 2021 season, the ERC-Michelin Talent Factory recognises the achievements of drivers in Rally2 cars under the age of 28 on 31 December 2022, competing in the FIA European Rally Championship on Michelin tyres. 

A number of incentives are also up for grabs with the top three ERC-Michelin Talent Factory members in the overall ERC standings after six rounds receiving an allocation of tyres for the deciding two rounds of the 2022 season. 

ERC-Michelin Talent Factory members will also benefit from dedicated television and social media coverage, while a special podium ceremony at the end of the sixth round of the season will be held. 

All three drivers, their co-drivers, plus a member from each driver’s team, will be invited to the Michelin headquarters in Clermont-Ferrand, France, for an exclusive VIP visit and the opportunity to meet key personnel from the company’s motorsport division. Travel and accommodation will be included as part of the prize.

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