Østberg exploring ARA opportunities

The WRC event winner is intrigued by what the American rallying scene has to offer

Mads Ostberg

Former World Rally Championship driver Mads Østberg is keen to compete in America in the future.

Østberg, who finished third in this year’s European Rally Championship, has rallied all over the world throughout his career but never in the US.

The closest the Norwegian has come is México – a fellow North American country he has competed in seven times in the past.

But Østberg – who is yet to firm up a plan for 2024 – admitted to DirtFish that rallying in the USA intrigues him.

Mads Ostberg

“Normally decisions are never made until December for some reason, so I’m sort of waiting for December. But I have a good group of people around me and they have been working quite hard to come up with solutions for the future,” he said.

“For sure there are some solutions ahead for next year. I would say it’s quite likely we will do another season in ERC but it’s definitely not done yet. But I am looking at other opportunities as well.

“I’ve been lucky enough to travel around the world and meet a lot of nice people so that means we do have opportunities and other places in the world to go and have fun, and one place I’ve been really curious about is America. It’s also there as one of the possibilities for next year.”

The ARA has experienced a boost in profile over recent seasons with increased international interest, although the 2023 season was dominated by Brandon Semenuk and Subaru who won all eight rounds.

Østberg would be a huge boost for the national series not only because of how competitive he is, but also the potential that he could lure more international drivers to come over and compete.

“I’m intrigued because I find it interesting with rallying over there, everything is done so differently,” Østberg said.

The vast differences between rallying in America and Europe are what interest the former M-Sport Ford and Citroën driver.


“Rally as well is a bit of an adventure, isn’t it? You’re travelling from A to B, you’re not going around in a circle. So every time you start a stage and you end a stage you have passed some kind of adventure.

“I like that adventure, and sometimes you need to go to new places to have bigger adventures, and I think that’s why I’ve been a bit interested in America.

“I think the most time I’ve spent in America is just in the passport control trying to transfer there!” he added.

“I need to change that if I should do a championship there, but I’m keen to see what it has to offer. If it doesn’t happen next year then maybe the year after, I don’t know, but there are some opportunities which is great, I love that.

“Like I say, the group of people I have around me, they are working really hard, and I do really appreciate that.

“I’m quite sure there will be some rallies next year as well.”