Tue 04 Jul 2023

Italian youngsters back on track in ERC

Alberto Battistolli and Andrea Mabellini head to Sweden this week for round five of the 2023 FIA European Rally Championship back on form having overcome two separate challenges.

Battistolli, 25, missed Rally Islas Canarias and ORLEN 79th Rally Poland to recover from shoulder surgery, while Mabellini, 23, crashed heavily on the Power Stage in Poland while on course for a top 10 finish.

The two Italians, who are friends as well as being strong ERC competitors, returned to action on Tet Rally Liepāja last month and claimed championship points. Delta Rally-run Battistolli took 15th position with MRF Tyres Dealer Team driver Mabellini finishing two places ahead. They will contest BAUHAUS Royal Rally of Scandinavia from 6 - 8 July.

Speaking in Liepāja, Mabellini, who scored his maiden ERC stage win on Rally Islas Canarias, said: “We are trying to keep our pace, but it’s not been easy because we know we don’t have any kind of joker for the rest of the season. But I learned something more starting at the front with loose gravel and then starting at the back. It was not full attack because we want to learn more and the wet conditions we have experienced are totally different from Fafe [where it also rained], because driving the car in fifth gear at 180kph is so fun but it’s also difficult.”

After overcoming an off-road moment on stage eight in Latvia, Battistolli was “happy” to finish on his ERC comeback aboard his all-new Škoda Fabia RS Rally2. “We had a little fun, more than expected, with a little pick in the forest for some mushrooms [on SS8]. But I didn’t find any so I was back on the road. It was not going so bad but I was just cruising, not risking so much and trying to enjoy as much sideways as possible.”

Ticket details and more BAUHAUS Royal Rally of Scandinavia information is available at: https://ercroyalrally.com.

Starts: Thursday, July 18, 2024 at 4:31:00 AM
Starts: Friday, July 26, 2024 at 7:00:00 AM
Starts: Saturday, July 27, 2024 at 6:00:00 AM