Ex-Formula 1 driver Vitaly Petrov will participate in the rally Karelia

18 January 2019/ smp

SMP Racing driver Vitaly Petrov will participate in the rally Karelia (stage of Russian Rally Championship) on January 25-26 in the Lakhdenpokhja region of Karelia.

Vitaly will race together with the co-driver Dmitry Yakovchenko, driving a Mitsubishi Lancer EVO 9 car of the PRO-Sport Rally team in class N4.

Rally Karelia is the first round of the Championship of Russia. The competition will start on Friday January 25 in the center of Lakhdenpokhja. On Saturday, participants will overcome the second part of the race and finish at the central square of the city. The total length of the snow-ice trail is 234 km, 106 km of which is the distance of special stages.

“I have always had a dream to participate in a rally completion and finally my dream will come true – said Vitaly Petrov. - I watched the rally since childhood, started my racing career with rally sprint and circuit races and all-wheel drive cars have always attracted me. Unfortunately, I had no time before - many different races with the SMP Racing, a lot of flights, so I literally had no chance to be distracted.

Now I have a free month, and we decided to take part in a round of the Russian Rally Championship. I understand that this is not the most advantageous place to join this competition, because other teams know these tracks and special stages perfectly, but now the main purpose is to get acquainted with this type of race, feel the atmosphere of the rally, try to work with a co-driver. In circuit racing, we drive alone and usually listen to some information on the radio or get short commands that need to be performed. The rally implies working with a co-driver, and it is not easy, which immediately became clear at the very first tests.

Therefore, the goal for this race is to get to the finish line. However, I have confidence in the PRO-Sport Rally team, which for many years has been managed by seven-time Russian rally champion Andrey Zhigunov. He helps me a lot, and I have no doubts in technical preparations as well. My co-driver will be a very experienced racing driver Dmitry Yakovchenko, who performed together with famous rally racers. We have already worked with him at some moments during the tests, I hope everything will be fine. Participation in rally Karelia will be an interesting experience, which I am sure will be useful in the future."

Rally Karelia schedule:

Friday, January 25:

14:45 - grand opening of the competition, the start of the first section of the rally (Lakhdenpokhya, Lenin str., 2, Market Square),

18:50 - the finish of the first rally day (Lakhdenpokhja, Lenin str., 2, Market Square).

January 26, Saturday:

10:00 - start of the second rally day (Lakhdenpokhja, Lenin str., 2, Market Square),

19:30 - awarding of winners (Lakhdenpokhja, Pionerskaya str., 5).
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