Ole Christian Veiby, who competes for Skoda Motorsport, tops the FIA Asia-Pacific Rally Championship (APRC) standings when only the events in Japan and India remain. The youngster and his co-driver Stig Rune Skjærmoen are prepared for a tough battle against their team-mate Gaurav Gill in the fight for the victory in Japan. Gill won the rally last year and is in second place overall – ten points after the Norwegian.
“Just like at the other events this year, I think it will be an even fight between us in the fight for the victory. If Gill would retire, I have the chance of securing the championship title. However, that ‘s not something I think about. Even though we have a good lead overall, it is very crucial to get to the finish and score points” said Ole.
The event in Japan is, like the other APRC rounds, a completely new experience for the Norwegian. He does not know much about what awaits him, but has heard that the stages are fast, but with narrow sections.
“Since everything is new to us, it’s very important to do a good job with the reconnaissance. We won’t get any test day this time so shakedown is what we will get before the actual start. But I think it will be fine. We have many kilometers of gravel driving behind us and I feel like we’re well prepared” he said.
Although the goal is to win, he does not plan on taking any risks too big.
“If it turns out that Gill sets a pace that we’re having trouble keeping up with, we will do our own thing and focus on completing the event. There’s no point in taking unnecessary risks when we are in the lead of the championship” said Ole.
The service area is located in Obihiro, on the island of Hokkaido, which is Japan’s northernmost island. The Olympic city Sapporo is the capital of the island.
“Japan is seven hours ahead of Norway, but there’s no problem adjusting to it. I’m starting to get experienced in that area” said Ole.
Source: Even Management