Solberg joins VW line-up for debut of WRC2 Polo GTI R5 car in Spain

Petter Solberg's return to the World Rally Championship at the wheel of Volkswagen's Polo GTI R5 car in Spain has been confirmed

Solberg joins VW line-up for debut of WRC2 Polo GTI R5 car in Spain

The Norwegian will join Eric Camilli in a two-car factory team for the debut of VW's all-new Polo GTI R5 in the WRC2 class.

Solberg, who won the WRC in 2003 but departed the series at the end of '12 to compete in rallycross, tested the car in Sweden earlier this year and earlier this month was tipped to drive the Polo in Spain.

Solberg said: "Everybody knows about my passion for rallying and when Sven [Smeets, Volkswagen Motorsport director] asked me if I would like to do Spain in the Polo, I jumped at the chance.

"When I drove the car in January, I didn't want to stop. Everything about the Polo GTI R5 worked from the very beginning.

"To be in the car for the very first time is a real privilege for me - I'm very happy that Volkswagen trusted this job to me and to Eric."

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Solberg has links to Volkswagen Motorsport through his PSRX rallycross team, which runs a pair of Polo R Supercars for himself and current World Rallycross champion Johan Kristoffersson.

Volkswagen team principal Smeets said it was a "dream" to land Solberg as a driver for the Spanish event on the final weekend of October.

"Petter is a true rally hero," said Smeets. "We have already experienced his passion and professionalism working alongside him in World Rallycross.

"To give everything, always 110% is Petter's trademark.

"He tested the Polo GTI R5 and, from the beginning, it was our dream to have him in the car to give this new customer rally car its debut.

"It's fantastic that he joins us in Spain to drive the Polo R5; I'm sure everybody is looking forward to seeing him back again - and our new car."

The R5 car is Volkswagen's first rally car since its all-conquering Polo R, a car that dominated the WRC for four years.

Spain is currently the only time the manufacturer plans to run a works entry in WRC2 before passing the R5 car on to customers.

Solberg will be co-driven for the WRC's only mixed-surface event by Veronica Engan, who usually co-drives his son Oliver.


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