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Mikko Heikkilä’s trip to Spain continues – this time on gravel stages

26.10.2022 / Juho Koski / Mikko Heikkilä Racing -tiedotus

Mikko Heikkilä competes in the Spanish Gravel Cup’s sixth round of the season, Rallye Ciudad de Granada this weekend. Heikkilä will be driving a Skoda Fabia R5 provided by C.D. Plemar Sport. Invited to the rally, the event brings valuable experience about the Southern Europe’s gravel roads.

Mikko Heikkilä, 30, along with his co-driver Samu Vaaleri, 24, compete this weekend in the round six of Spanish Gravel Cup, Rallye Ciudad de Granada. Heikkilä, who competed in his career-third WRC tarmac event, RallyRACC Catalunya, got a surprise extension to his competitive trip to Spain after the Finnish Champion got an invitation to drive also on gravel.

– Juho Hänninen, A finnish ex-WRC driver, was asked about a driver who could compete in a local event, and he recommended us. A big thank you to him for that. The rally is similar toa round of Finnish Rally Championship round in terms of its length. This is a very pleasant opportunity to drive a fine rally with a bit smaller effort from our part.

Heikkilä is competing with a previous-generation Skoda Fabia R5, provided by C.D. Plemar Sport. Heikkilä’s aim is to drive a good rally after the RallyRACC Catalunya.

– It’s nice to be able to drive without too much pressure after Catalunya. Our aim is to have fun and compete for the top places, even though we don’t really know how fast our co-competitors are on these roads. We’ll find that out on Saturday.

Whereas tarmac is more typical for international events in Spain, the almost 100 stage kilometres are driven completely on gravel. The character of the stages differs greatly from those found in Finland.

– This is quite big for us. The rally will give us good experience of the gravel roads in Southern Europe, something we can’t experience in Finland. We have been testing here and sitting in a rally car on these roads before, but we have little to no knowledge of the route yet. The roads are characteristically rougher and more twistier than in Finland. Similar roads have been driven in WRC before as well, so this good practise for us in long term.

Rallye Ciudad de Granada is driven on Saturday 29th of October. The event consists of 10 special stages and 92,08 special stage kilometres.

Photo: Hannu Rainamo

Score top 5

1. Mikko Heikkilä / Samu Vaaleri 130 points MäntsMK (Rally2)
2. Emil Lindholm / Reeta Hämäläinen 129 points NHD (Rally2)
3. Egon Kaur / Silver Simm 105 points Viro (R5)
4. Teemu Asunmaa / Ville Mannisenmäki 97 points Alavuden UA (Rally2)
5. Aleksi Röyhkiö / Antti Haapala 58 points PR-Racing (R5)

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Calendar 2023

1) 12.-14.1. Arctic Lapland Rally, Rovaniemi
2) 3.-4.2. IsoValkeinen SM-Ralli Kuopio
3) 3.-4.3. SM Jyväskylän Talviralli, Jyväskylä
4) 19.-20.5. SM Pohjanmaa Ralli, Seinäjoki
5) 16.-17.6. SM Itäralli, Joensuu
6) 11.-12.8. SM-Ralli, Lahti
7) 29.9.-30.9. SM-Ralli, Kokkola

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