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Season 2022: Selected rallyes with Ford Fiesta RS WRC

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Kilpailun nimi ja paikkakunta
Arctic Lapland Ralli, Rovaniemi
SM Riihimäki Ralli
Kesk. Raportti
SM Laukaa Rallisprint, Lievestuore
4. Raportti
Lamborghini Super Trofeo Portimao, Portugal
4. & 7. Raportti

Season 2022 videos:
- Ford Fiesta RS WRC winter tests: https://youtu.be/E-iQaoXiKIw
- Arctic Lapland Rally 2022 compilation: https://youtu.be/AYTFztOYOVc
- Arctic Lapland Rally 2022 shakedown: https://youtu.be/5NtTi3CjE7Y
- Arctic Lapland Rally 2022 SS1: Aittajärvi: https://youtu.be/IJuoux0-kSM
- Arctic Lapland Rally 2022 SS2: Mäntyvaara #1: https://youtu.be/FYHa3hyp_R4
- Arctic Lapland Rally 2022 SS3: Kaihuavaara: https://youtu.be/9-fv8i7XGCk
- Arctic Lapland Rally 2022 SS4: Siikakämä: https://youtu.be/nLmAI2O-F9Y
- Arctic Lapland Rally 2022 SS5: Mäntyvaara #2: https://youtu.be/U4J4K4-H3yg
- Arctic Lapland Rally 2022 SS6: Ahmavaara: https://youtu.be/SMQvp3RDF2w
- Arctic Lapland Rally 2022 SS7: Ounasvaara: https://youtu.be/2D3d3pPSU6g
- Arctic Lapland Rally 2022 SS8: Heinunkierto: https://youtu.be/_LLgWwnLdpk
- Arctic Lapland Rally 2022 SS9: Sarriojärvi: https://youtu.be/2m1sD5jFC98
- Arctic Lapland Rally 2022 SS10: Ristilampi: https://youtu.be/HLd_PcVxFsk

- FRC Riihimäki Ralli 2022 - SS1: Hirvijärvi: https://youtu.be/QhrN2I1KKbo
- FRC Riihimäki Ralli 2022 - SS2: Ojajoki #1: https://youtu.be/C_Us1JD3_-k
- FRC Riihimäki Ralli 2022 - SS3: Ourajoki: https://youtu.be/DbV4K51x7Ms
- FRC Riihimäki Ralli 2022 - SS4: Nummenkylä: https://youtu.be/CJrj1aDOFCs
- FRC Riihimäki Ralli 2022 - SS5: Ahoinen: https://youtu.be/V2xBxbt8P4g
- FRC Riihimäki Ralli 2022 - SS6: Pappilanlääni: https://youtu.be/087R4j6fQmk
- FRC Riihimäki Ralli 2022 - SS7: Ojajoki #2: https://youtu.be/J2LRE96M57E

- Laukaa FRC Rallisprint 2022: https://youtu.be/b_MPIXAyEzI
- Lamborghini Super Trofeo testing at Alastaro Circuit: https://youtu.be/DK8_8G8zUjw
- SuperCars GT TV-broadcast: https://youtu.be/E_hYWzi_Ksk

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16.1.2022 - Mikko Eskelinen and co-driver Arto Kapanen enjoyed a lot in competition with Ford Fiesta RS WRC - Engine misfires caused troubles

Flying Finn Mikko Eskelinen competed in 2022 edition of Arctic Lapland Rally with Ford Fiesta RS WRC which was previously owned by Dakar Rally winner and olympic medalist Nasser Al-Attiyah. For two days, 10 special stages and 222,80 special stage kilometres he and co-driver Arto Kapanen collect lots of highly and valuable experience after running only 50 test kilometres before the event.

57th Arctic Lapland Rally was 25th for co-driver Arto Kapanen. In very competitive event they drove 10th fastest pace in overall and fastest in group of WRC. Even their rally was slowed down by a technical problem and the retirement of rival Jari-Matti Latvala, Eskelinen was very happy for his 16th Arctic Lapland Rally.

- Me and Arto had an excellent competition with Jari-Matti Latvala until the moment he had to retire due engine issues. Also in same stage the engine of my Ford Fiesta RS WRC misfired two times and we lost a minute. Also in first day we had some electrical issues with the battery of our car, but fortunately we managed to fix them just before the start of third stage, Eskelinen told the challenged he had.

- Two weeks before the rally our car was delivered from Italy. Dynamo Team made superb job by converting the car from tarmac to gravel and snow version. The car is fantastic to drive and Arctic Lapland Rally is definitely the most favorite rally I have ever driven. Furthermore as we now have the first competition experience with the car in our belts, we now can focus on test and developement work, Eskelinen continues.

57. Arctic Lapland Rally offered a thrilling battle for the victory as reigning Finnish Rally Champion Emil Lindholm and multiple Finnish Rally Champion Teemu Asunmaa delivered a dramatic finish. In sixth stage Lindholm and his co-driver Reeta Hämäläinen increased a lot of their lead. However in 8th stage they had to avoid raindeers and therefore Asunmaa narrowed the gap to 0,1 seconds before the final stage.

Fierce battle for the victory was concluded in final stage as Asunmaa made a small mistake and spun into snowbanks for next 12 minutes. Arctic Lapland Rally was won by Emil Lindholm.

Final results 57th Arctic Lapland Rally: 
1. Emil Lindholm & Reeta Hämäläinen, Skoda Fabia R5 EVO, 1:53:30,8    
2. Egon Kaur & Silver Simm, Volkswagen Polo R5, +1:23,7s
3. Mikko Heikkilä & Samu Vaaleri, Skoda Fabia R5 EVO, +1:50,0s
10. Mikko Eskelinen & Arto Kapanen, Ford Fiesta RS WRC, +8.21,1s

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7.2.2022 - Mikko Eskelinen frustrated in FRC Riihimäki Rally - Sharp rock broke the tyre, rim and brakes

Flying Finn Mikko Eskelinen and his co-driver Arto Kapanen competed in second round of Finnish Rally Championship with Ford Fiesta RS WRC. Very challenging winter conditions delivered lots of challenges for the drivers because large amount of wet and loost snow poured the stages to very slippery surface. Therefore the rally was more of a survival than fierce competition of speed.

Furthermore as Eskelinen and Kapanen spun in the middle of second stage, they had to abandon their hopes for a good result and therefore their competition mode was turned into sunday driving. However in penultimate stage the hopes of reaching for the finish game to end when they hit right front wheel to a sharp rock which had surfaced from the ground. Heavy hit broke the wheel, rim and also brakes and therefore they were forced to retire the event.

- Our hopes were set for the victory of WRC group. However in first stage I hit many times to snowbanks and lost the confidence to drive hard. Then in second stage we had a fast-paced spin and lost one minute. After that it was just pure survival for the end, Eskelinen tells.

- Because conditions were very winterish and we had to compete on heavy snow, we had no grip at all. Then in penultimate stage one sharp rock delivered us a big surprise and due heavy impact we lost tyre and rim. However we didn't stop to change broken tyre and kept driving for the finish. Then about one kilometre before the end of the stage we noticed that also brake discs as well as brake pads had dropped off. As there was no service before final stage we had to retire the event, Eskelinen continues.

Winner of the rally was multiple Finnish Rally Champion Teemu Asunmaa who collect highest Championship points as in final stage reigning Finnish Rally Champion Emil Lindholm had a pace note mistake which caused a heavy hit to snowbank.

Final results SM Riihimäki rally 2022, overall classifications top-3:
1. Teemu Asunmaa & Ville Mannisenmäki, Skoda Fabia R5 EVO, 57:49,8
2. Mikko Heikkilä & Samu Vaaleri, Skoda Fabia R5 EVO, +22,3s
3. Juha Salo & Mikko Markkula, Skoda Fabia R5 EVO, 38,9s
retired Mikko Eskelinen & Arto Kapanen, Ford Fiesta RS WRC, SS7 lost a wheel

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7.3.2022 - Mikko Eskelinen and Arto Kapanen kept 4th fastest pace in jumps of legendary Ruuhimäki stage

Flying Finn Mikko Eskelinen and his co-driver Arto Kapanen participated into second round of Finnish Rallysprint Championship series which was driven in legendary Ruuhimäki stage, which is better known as power stage of WRC Rally Finland. The duo was able to compete in the event due change of regulations; Now also rally cars with co-driver can compete in Finnish Rally Sprint events.

- We decided to enter the event due the change of regulations and therefore we could measure our speed against top drivers of Finnish Rallysprint Championship series as well as delivering marketing vicibility for our sponsors and partners, Eskelinen tells.

In first run Ford Fiesta RS WRC drivers Eskelinen and Kapanen kept third fastest pace. Even in second run they could improve their pace by 0,47 seconds they lost one position as Niko Riikonen improved his time by 2,66 seconds. Winner of the fast-paced event was rallysprint specialist Tuukka Hallia.

- Even our car is build by Ford manufacturer team M-Sport and is complitely full-blooded World Rally Car, we still had less horsepowers than cars which are build in rallysprint regulations. Furthermore my small driving mistakes forced us to satisfy into 4th position in overall standings. However even I would have done my best, I still wasn't able to match my speed against winner Tuukka Hallia, shared Eskelinen his feelings.

Final results Laukaa Rallysprint 2022, Lievestuore: Overall top-5:
1. Tuukka Hallia, Mitsubishi Lancer Evo VI, 2:41,05
2. Niko Riikonen, Ford Fiesta RS, +5,08s
3. Jari Lamminsivu, Skoda Fabia R5, +5.48s
4. Mikko Eskelinen & Arto Kapanen, Ford Fiesta RS WRC, +6,45s
5. Juho Mäki-Tammela, Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX, +6,77s

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4.11.2022 - Mikko Eskelinen made a strong return to Lamborghini Super Trofeo European racing series - 4th position from the final round

Flying Finn Mikko Eskelinen, age of 50, ended his two years break from international racing series in portigalize circuit of Portimao. Eskelinen competed in Lamborghini Super Trofeo European Championship final two races with german team mate Jurgen Krebs.

In two 50 minute events Mikko and Jurgen delivered strong performances with Leipert Motorsport 620bph Lamborghini Huracan Super Trofeo Evo II car as in first race they lost AM-group podium just by 1,2 seconds and in second race they collect 7th position in AM-group.

- I was quite surprised that it took only few laps to get me back into the same pace I was two years ago after winning a silver medal in Lamborghihi Super Trofeo Europe PRO-AM series. Furthermore as my team mate Jurgen Krebs drove his season best performance and therefore we were set for podium position in AM-group. However we lost it just by 1,2 seconds as I made a big mistake as I let faster PRO-group car to pass me. I didn't notice that there was also AM-group car behind him and it was game over for podium, Eskelinen tells.

- Later on same day we drove the second round which was pretty much driving behind safety car because of our fellow competitors had a huge crash. Therefore I lost all possibility to compete on podium postions and therefore 7th position in AM-group was a big dissapointment. Even so it was very nice to be back on circuit racing and now I feel very relaxed to start planning for my season 2023 competition program, Eskelinen continued.

Fastest AM-group driver in final two rounds of Lamborghini Super Trofeo European Championship series was polish Andrzej Lewandowski who in season 2020 won the title and left Mikko Eskelinen and his team mate Elias Niskanen in silver medals.

Final results Lamborghini Super Trofeo Algarve 2022 #1: Friday 4.11.2022, AM-group, top-5:
1. Andrzej Lewandowski (POL), VSR Racing, 24 laps
2. Shota Abkazava (GEO), Artline Team Georgia, +21.109s
3. Cyril Leimer (CHE), Autovitesse Racing, +27.522s
4. Mikko Eskelinen (FIN) & Jurgen Krebs (CHE), Leipert Motorsport, +28.786s
5. Adrian Lewandowski (POL), GT3 Poland, +1 kierros

Final results Lamborghini Super Trofeo Algarve 2022 #2: Friday 4.11.2022, AM-group, top-3:
1. Andrzej Lewandowski (POL), VSR Racing, 26 kierrosta
2. Gabriel Rindone (ITA), Leipert Motorsport, +28.806s
5. Adrian Lewandowski (POL), GT3 Poland, +40.028s
7. Mikko Eskelinen (FIN) & Jurgen Krebs (CHE), Leipert Motorsport, +1 lap
Mikko Eskelisen kotisivut on suunnitellut ja toteuttanut MediaGuru Jack Bacon - Digitaalisen median tuotantostudio - www.mediaguru.fi