Arai in “unique” ERC challenge
Hiroki Arai has described his first Rally Liepāja and FIA ERC1 Junior Championship debut as a “unique challenge”.
The Japanese, who is embarking on a European in a STARD-run Citroën C3 R5, is heading Yokohama’s return to the ERC with new co-driver Ilka Minor from Austria.
“This is a unique challenge,” said Arai, the 25-year-old son of Japanese rallying legend Toshi Arai. “This rally won’t be so easy because the level of the ERC is high and there are lots of young drivers with experience of this event. It’s also going to be a challenging week for me because it will be my first time with my new co-driver and I don’t really know the car. But the main purpose is to work with Yokohama on the development of the tyres.”
While Rally Liepāja is all-new to Arai, he does have previous experience of competing in Latvia, winning his class in fifth overall back in 2015. “I did [Rally Latvia] four years ago so I have an understanding there is more loose gravel than what you get in Finland for example.”