No matter how much your parents warn you about things, it’s not until you get out there and experience them for yourselves that you realise just how tricky they can be. Like the route for the third round of the World Rally Championship, for example.
Petter Solberg is well placed to offer advice to his son, having won on these roads 15 years ago, but Oliver admitted the Rally México recce really opened his eyes.
“I talked a lot with papa and I talked to lots of people,” said the 18-year-old, “but then when I got to the recce, it was much more difficult than I thought. The roads were much rougher, much tighter and more tricky.
“Monte Carlo is always going to be such a difficult event, but I think the recce for this one could be right up there with that. It’s definitely the most tricky gravel event I’ve done. One of the keys here is going to be to know where I can push hard and where I’m going to risk the puncture.
“My cousin Pontus [Tidemand], he has much more experience of these roads. Pontus and the other guys will know where they need to be neat and tidy and this is what I have to find out. I’m here for the experience, so a top-three place in WRC 3 would be a great result for me.”
What about the recce, Oliver? What car did you start the recce in?
“The Mini, like usual.”
What car did you finish the recce in?
“Ah, I borrowed a Suzuki Swift after the Mini overheated. But in the middle of those two cars, I also used a Chevy Suburban, you know – the big one! The recce was interesting, using those three different cars I think we will notice some small changes in the way the notes flow.
“OK, it would have been nice to use the normal recce car all the time, but these things can happen and we just needed to get on with it. The Chevy was pretty comfortable though!”
Solberg’s selection of recce vehicles is pictured below.