Mads Østberg returns to Ford Fiesta RS power at this weekend’s Rally Guanajuato México, which carried him to the lead of the event in 2013.
The Norwegian, who spent two seasons with Citroen, held the top spot on the opening leg in 2013 and was locked in a battle with Sébastien Ogier, who singled him out as his main rival for the win, until an electrical issue forced him down the standings.
And after finishing runner-up on last year’s event in a DS 3 world rally car (WRC), Østberg believes he can be a challenger again this weekend, even if his start position of third on the road won’t give him much of an advantage.
“This is one of my favorite events and one where we have done well in the past,” he said. “The last time I was behind the wheel of a Fiesta I was leading the rally and challenging for the win.”
“This will be my first time driving the latest version of the Fiesta RS WRC on gravel, so there will be an element of getting to grips with everything. Having said that, we had a good test earlier this week and I would hope that we will be able to get up to speed fairly quickly,” Østberg added
The Norwegian is also feeling confident about his working relations with new co-driver Ola Floene, who joined him for first time at the Monte-Carlo Rally.
“In Mexico your pacenotes need to be absolutely perfect if you’re going to challenge for the top results, so it’s good that the relationship between Ola and myself is progressing really well. It feels as though we have been sitting together for years, and that’s the sort of confidence you need to do well in Mexico,” he said.