Rally Mexico is the first gravel event of the season, and Andreas Mikkelsen plans to fight for top spot on the podium in the 2018 seasons third event.
It’s warm and dusty high-altitude event, where several stages stretch higher than 2600 meters above sea-level. The thinner air makes it harder for the engine to breath and steels horsepower, and even the drivers can get head-aches and struggle with normal breathing in the thin air. Preparations are more important than ever for the drivers, and Andreas Mikkelsen spend the final week cycling up and down the mountains of Tenerife before flying to Leon. – I managed to get a good few kilometers done, Andreas says.
Andreas have had a good start to his Hyundai Motorsport campaign. The first podium came with third in Rally Sweden, and he has won stages on every event they have done. Together with co-driver Anders Jæger he hopes to continue with another good event in Mexico.
- It’s the championship that is our target this season, so we need to finish on the podium, preferably victory. We will be car number 6 on the road when we get underway on Friday, and the plan is to get the most out of the position and hopefully end the first day leading. And then keep that lead!
- We do not have the best history from Mexico, even though we have been on the podium here. But in 2016 I feel we finally got it. I know we crashed out that time, but it was good up until that point, he explains. What’s special for Mexico is that you need to have a clean and very precise driving, and very quickly you need to find the correct balance between being fast without being sideways. There are big rocks in the roads, not to mention the treacherous ditches where you always be caught out by surprise. It’s not clean ditches, you always have to watch out. This is not a flat-out rally, you need to be clever and maintain car and tyres all the time.
Rally Mexico will be the Norwegian duo’s sixth event with Hyundai Motorsport, and Andreas is getting closer to know the car well enough, but there is still more to come.
- We still need to learn more to get to know the car completely. This is for the fine-tuning so we can be a perfect match. I’m looking forward to being back on the gravel, it worked quite well in Australia last year, so I’m on the positive side for this one!
All the best,