Ostberg gets set for WRC return

Practice rallies boost ace Norwegian ahead of 2012 bid

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By www.wrc.com

30 January 2012 - 23:33
Ostberg gets set for WRC return

Mads Ostberg believes he will be a better driver when contests Rally Sweden next month, the first event of a minimum 11-round campaign in this year’s FIA World Rally Championship powered by Nokia.

Ostberg didn’t enter the season-opening Rallye Monte-Carlo in order to be better prepared for the snow-based spectacular from 9-12 February. He plans to emulate the performance that turned him into an overnight sensation when he finished second in Sweden 12 months ago having challenged Mikko Hirvonen for the overall lead.

“Of course we are not going to Sweden just to fight for the top 10 I can tell you,” said Ostberg in a recent interview on World Rally Radio. “We will prepare as well as possible and will have done three events on snow before Sweden so we will be ready. We are ready to fight for the podium but I know it won’t be any easier than last year.”

Ostberg has so far tackled the Mountain Rally and Rally Elverum in his native Norway as part of his preparations for Sweden. He won Rally Elverum last weekend in a Regional Rally Car-specification Ford Fiesta and is now gearing up to contest Rally Finnskog in his homeland this Saturday.

Commenting on his 2012 WRC campaign alongside co-driver Jonas Andersson, Ostberg, who was sixth in the 2011 drivers’ standings, said: “It’s very nice to be back and also nice to have a programme with M-Sport and Ford. I’ve been working very hard and it’s been very difficult. Unfortunately I was not able to get things ready for Monte Carlo but from Sweden we have a good programme and I’m pleased to do so many events. We’re a bit unsure of all the events we will do. Hopefully we can do New Zealand and maybe some good results will help us.”

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