Mikko Heikkilä is nineteenth after two competitive days in the ERC Rally Islas Canarias. The Finn drove surely through the Friday’s staging with the goal of learning more about the surface.
Mikko Heikkilä, 31, and his co-driver Samu Vaaleri, 26, are nineteenth on the second round of ERC, Rally Islas Canarias, after the first proper competitive day. The Racing Factory driver took no risks on Friday.
The rally began on Thursday with a qualifying stage and a short super special driven in Las Palmas. On the rally-opening stage packed with spectators Heikkilä was 19th.
Friday’s first proper competitive day saw six special stages. The opening stages were damp and thus Heikkilä took no risks, running in 20th place by the time of the day’s service.
-Driving feels OK from time to time, but times do not reflect it. There are also some issues with our pace notes as they are too tight for some places. We’ll do some adjustments to them during the service, however. Michelin tires grip well in the Canary Island’s tarmac, and car is running well too, so we should be able to increase our pace for the second run.
The second leg of the day contained morning’s three stages driven again. Heikkilä continued his steady and sure drive being nineteenth overall after two days of running.
-The second leg was a bit better; my driving was slightly braver even though it didn’t show in the times. We didn’t have any moments today, so from that point we can increase our pace. Driving on tarmac isn’t a routine for me yet, so it’s difficult to anticipate the grip levels.
For the rally-ending Saturday Heikkilä is aiming to get more into grips with the tarmac stages of Canary Islands.
-We made slight changes to the setup of the car for the last stage, and they were a step for the right direction. Now the rear of the car rotates more to my liking, so we’ll have a look into it before Saturday. We’ll try to improve for tomorrow.
ERC Rally Islas Canarias continues Saturday 6th of May with six special stages and 98,46 special stage kilometres.
Overall results after 7/13 special stages:
1. Yoann Bonato 54:29,2 Citroen C3 Rally2 FRA
2. Hayden Paddon 54:40,2 +11,0 Hyundai i20 N Rally2 NZL
3. Efren Llarena 54:53,4 +24,2 Skoda Fabia RS Rally2 ESP
4. Andrea Nucita 54:56,5 +27,3 Hyundai i20 N Rally2 ITA
5. Javier Pardo 55:00,6 +31,4 Hyundai i20 N Rally2 ESP
19. Mikko Heikkilä 55:38,2 +1:09,0 Skoda Fabia Rally2 Evo FIN
Photo: Zoom Motorsport
Words: Mikko Heikkilä Racing Communications / Juho Koski