Young Austrian chooses ERC to Landa experience
Nikolai Landa has chosen the FIA European Rally Championship to continue to grow his experience, teaming up with his co-driving father Günter in ERC3 Junior.
The 21-year-old from Austria is targeting three rounds of the Pirelli-supported category in 2020 with a full assault on the young driver category the ultimate aim next season.
Having recently completed his university exams, Landa will begin his ERC adventure on Rally Liepāja in May before he contests 77th Rally Poland in June. A return to Barum Czech Rally Zlín, which he first tackled last season, completes his three-event campaign although an outing on July’s Rally di Roma Capitale is also under consideration, budget permitting.
What do you hope to archive in ERC3 Junior?
“The main goal is to learn as much as we can and collect as many kilometres as we can. With Beppo Harrach we have made a plan of how we will approach these rallies. It’s much more helpful when you drive the rally on a constant speed and get to the finish line, as it’s way better than to have a really good speed and crash on the second stage. But we also want to be fast so we need a good balance.”
“We want to compete in the whole of ERC Junior in 2021 if that’s possible with the sponsors. We are trying to get a lot of experience because we are against other ERC Junior drivers who have done these rallies two or three times.”
It’s fair to say you are getting plenty of advice?
“Beppo Harrach is our team leader and former Austrian champion and it’s amazing to have him on our side to help us. Then I also have my father, my co-pilot. He used to drive himself when he was in his 20s and that’s how I got into rallies because I was in touch from an early age and got really excited about it. My father shows me in the recce what’s important and to find the good racing line. He’s helping me a lot so that’s really useful to have somebody in the car who also has experience from the driving seat.”
You’re planning two gravel rounds of the ERC, is that your preferred surface?
“I like to drive on gravel more than on Tarmac because I think I am a bit faster on gravel. We are planning some rallies in Italy as well this year because I know I have to improve on Tarmac and there are some really good roads there. We tried to pick our rallies with the focus on where we have to improve the most.”
Landa’s ERC3 Junior campaign is being made possible by the support of the following: Advancis, DriftCompany, Lederer IT Services, Allianz – Agentur Latzl, Dormakaba, Pirelli, Pfabigan Photo & Video and Rallyepics by Autengruber.
Did you know?
Landa’s team boss, Beppo Harrach, is a two-time ERC2 event winner and an outright podium finisher at FIA European Rally Championship level.
Where to watch Nikolai Landa in 2020?
Rally Liepāja (Latvia), 29-31 May; 77th Rally Poland, 26-28 June; Barum Czech Rally Zlín, 28-30 August