Tue 25 Oct 2022

Palomo's high-pressure weekend

Newly-crowned ERC4 champion Óscar Palomo has talked of the pressure he faced at last week’s RallyRACC Catalunya-Costa Daurada.

Arriving at the FIA European Rally Championship finale with a 14-point championship advantage, the 19-year-old knew that a top-five result would be enough to seal the title on his home roads. 

But even getting to the finish of the Salou fixture was a challenge in itself for many crews, not least for those driving front-wheel drive Rally4 machinery like Palomo. 

Running towards the back of the field and behind the FIA World Rally Championship contingent, Spain’s smooth asphalt stages quickly became polluted with dirt and gravel which was dragged onto the road as the cars cut through corners.

That, Palomo says, was an extra weight on his shoulders as he threaded his Peugeot 208 through the punishing speed tests - securing the ERC4 crown by finishing fourth in the category. 

“It’s very important for me to win the championship,” said Palomo. “This has been my first year competing in the ERC and it’s been amazing - I don’t have the words to describe this situation. 

“The truth is that the rally itself was very complicated,” he continued. “Some sections were very gravelly which meant it very easy to make a mistake, but we also knew that by going at our own pace and keeping our concentration, we were going to be able to achieve it. 

RallyRACC 2022: Event Highlights

“We had a lot of pressure, but I also think we were well-prepared to be able to withstand it. We just did our job and really enjoyed the moment - an unforgettable moment!” 

Palomo is currently working towards his future plans and, while his next steps are yet to be confirmed, the Spaniard assured FIAERC.com he hopes to continue his championship-winning momentum.

“We still don’t have anything clear for next year,” he said. “But what we do know is that we have to keep working hard to be able to continue moving forwards.”

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