Petter Solberg says he expects Rally Argentina to provide a different challenge next weekend, with the latest round of the World Rally Championship being the longest on the calendar for nearly a decade.
The event will be the longest since the Safari Rally back in 2002 with more than 500km of competition, including two runs through the Ascochinga - Agua de Oro I stage on the opening day, which runs to nearly 200km alone.
The final day of action will also feature the longest stage of the season as crews tackle the 65km run through the Matadero – Ambul test with a series of classic stages returning to the event for the first time since the mid-1990s.
Speaking ahead of the event, Solberg said Argentina was now more of an endurance rally and his approach would change as a result as he seeks to add to his three previous podium finishes.
“I enjoy this rally but I think it could be quite different this year,” he said. “It's 120km longer than in 2011 and that may alter the way in which some drivers approach it. It's not a sprint, it's an endurance rally. There's no need to get too excited too early and attack from the start, so I can wait a little, judge the pace and push later on when I need to.
“It's a difficult rally. The final day's stages are at high altitude and conditions can be bad up there. Fog and even ice are not unusual. But I love it, partly because of the atmosphere. The stages are packed with people and even the liaison sections on the public roads have huge crowds. They're so enthusiastic.”
Solberg will lead Ford into the weekend after Jari-Matti Latvala was forced out of the event after breaking his collarbone.