Mads Ostberg won the Helsinki Battle exhibition race for the Citreon Total Abu Dhabi World Rally Team on Sunday. Courtesy Abu Dhabi Racing
Mads Ostberg won the Helsinki Battle exhibition race for the Citreon Total Abu Dhabi World Rally Team on Sunday. Courtesy Abu Dhabi Racing

Mads Ostberg will take Helsinki Battle win into Rally Finland



HELSINKI // Mads Ostberg defeated both the legends and the stars on Sunday to win the Helsinki Battle exhibition race for the Citreon Total Abu Dhabi World Rally Team, ahead of Rally Finland this week.

On a track set up in the Hietalahti district of the Finnish capital, six world champions were joined by past rally greats such as Markki Alen, Macus Gronholm, Juha Kankkunen and Tommi Makinen.

Ostberg defeated all comers in recording his first victory for the Abu Dhabi team, which enjoyed a winning day on what has otherwise been a challenging season.

“It’s always good to win,” Ostberg said. “And this victory is a perfect warm-up for next week’s Rally Finland. The winning feeling will be great to bring with us.”

The Finland Grand Prix, which begins Thursday, is the fastest event on the world championship calendar.

The Abu Dhabi team enters the second half of the 2014 season aiming for strong result.

The team will field two entries, driven by Ostberg and Jonas Andersson, and the other car will be driven by the Britons Kris Meeke and Paul Nagle. Rally Finland is made up of 26 stages, on smooth gravel among forests and lakes. The circuit is known for big jumps.

“Technically speaking, the Finnish route calls for great precision in the set-up of the cars. It’s a very complicated rally to win,” said Didier Clement, the Abu Dhabi team’s chief operations engineer.

“It took us several years before we managed to win here.

“You need to know the course very well and avoid making even the slightest mistake. It’s a sprint from start to finish and there is virtually no chance of making up any time lost though mistakes.”

To prepare for this round, a test session has been scheduled.

“Nothing is left to chance,” Clement said.

“More so than elsewhere, the drivers must be able to feel confident in the car. It has to be particularly responsive.

“Usually, we always look for a balanced set-up, an effective compromise. In Finland, above all else, you need pure speed.”

During the tests, the Abu Dhabi team will also be preparing for the future, since Michelin will be providing new tyres in their competitive debut at this rally.

The cars will also be equipped with several upgrades as part of the development program initiated for 2015.

Follow our sports coverage on twitter at @SprtNationalUAE

Sweet Tooth

Creator: Jim Mickle
Starring: Christian Convery, Nonso Anozie, Adeel Akhtar, Stefania LaVie Owen
Rating: 2.5/5

RACE RESULTS

1. Valtteri Bottas (FIN/Mercedes) 1hr 21min 48.527sec
2. Sebastian Vettel (GER/Ferrari) at 0.658sec
3. Daniel Ricciardo (AUS/Red Bull) 6.012
4. Lewis Hamilton (GBR/Mercedes) 7.430
5. Kimi Räikkönen (FIN/Ferrari) 20.370
6. Romain Grosjean (FRA/Haas) 1:13.160
7. Sergio Pérez (MEX/Force India) 1 lap
8. Esteban Ocon (FRA/Force India) 1 lap
9. Felipe Massa (BRA/Williams) 1 lap
10. Lance Stroll (CAN/Williams) 1 lap
11. Jolyon Palmer (GBR/Renault) 1 lap
12. Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL/McLaren) 1 lap
13. Nico Hülkenberg (GER/Renault) 1 lap
14. Pascal Wehrlein (GER/Sauber) 1 lap
15. Marcus Ericsson (SWE/Sauber) 2 laps
16. Daniil Kvyat (RUS/Toro Rosso) 3 laps

The biog

Favourite food: Fish and seafood

Favourite hobby: Socialising with friends

Favourite quote: You only get out what you put in!

Favourite country to visit: Italy

Favourite film: Lock Stock and Two Smoking Barrels.

Family: We all have one!

The biog

Name: Shamsa Hassan Safar

Nationality: Emirati

Education: Degree in emergency medical services at Higher Colleges of Technology

Favourite book: Between two hearts- Arabic novels

Favourite music: Mohammed Abdu and modern Arabic songs

Favourite way to spend time off: Family visits and spending time with friends

The specs

Engine: 2.3-litre 4cyl turbo
Power: 299hp at 5,500rpm
Torque: 420Nm at 2,750rpm
Transmission: 10-speed auto
Fuel consumption: 12.4L/100km
On sale: Now
Price: From Dh157,395 (XLS); Dh199,395 (Limited)

Our legal advisor

Ahmad El Sayed is Senior Associate at Charles Russell Speechlys, a law firm headquartered in London with offices in the UK, Europe, the Middle East and Hong Kong.

Experience: Commercial litigator who has assisted clients with overseas judgments before UAE courts. His specialties are cases related to banking, real estate, shareholder disputes, company liquidations and criminal matters as well as employment related litigation. 

Education: Sagesse University, Beirut, Lebanon, in 2005.

Company profile

Name: Elggo
Started: August 2022
Founders: Luma Makari and Mirna Mneimneh
Based: Dubai, UAE
Sector: Education technology / health technology
Size: Four employees
Investment stage: Pre-seed


Latest
Most Read
Top Videos