Thu 04 Jul 2024

Tänak tells ERC stars to expect the unexpected in Estonia

Estonian hero Ott Tänak has told drivers new to his home round of the FIA European Rally Championship that this week’s Delfi Rally Estonia will be far from an easy ride.

The flat-out gravel contest forms part of the ERC schedule for the first time since 2016 and has attracted a star-studded entry list, including many event rookies.  

While former world champion Tänak won’t be in contention for a record-extending fifth win – his choice of Hyundai i20 N Rally1 as part of his Tet Rally Latvia preparations makes him ineligible for the main ERC event – he’s been happy to pass on his knowledge to European rallying’s elite.  

“Rally Estonia is something you need to experience to understand it, without experience it’s a bit tricky,” the 36-year-old said. “Normally for the first loop the stages are very, very smooth. But for the second loop it can get very rough and it can change a lot from stage to stage.   

“It’s a bit better to start later [on the road] because it’s always cleaning but it depends a lot on the weather and at this time in Estonia the weather can change very quickly, even though it’s very warm at the moment.”  

Delfi Rally Estonia, which takes place from 5 - 7 July between the cities of Tartu and Otepää, brings the ERC back to the country for the first time since 2016 and provides another high-speed gravel test following last month’s fast-paced BAUHAUS Royal Rally of Scandinavia.   

Apart from the Qualifying Stage and the Elva super special stage, the 14th Rally Estonia covers familiar territory compared to the WRC-counting 2023 edition, with the majority of the stages tweaked versions from 12 months ago.

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