Petter Solberg is to join the star-studded line-up at this weekend's CarFest North to be staged at Cholmondeley Castle in Cheshire.
The 37-year-old Norwegian, who won the World Rally Championship in 2003 and who currently competes for the Ford World Rally Team, confirmed his participation on both Saturday and Sunday when chatting live on air to event mastermind Chris Evans on his Breakfast Show on BBC Radio 2 on Thursday.
“Just when you thought CarFest couldn't get any more exciting, we've got Petter Solberg to top the bill. What a signing!” enthused Evans.
Solberg, who is gearing up for next week's Wales Rally GB, vowed to put on some spectacular driving performances for the tens of thousands of festival goers at Cholmondeley.
“I'm going to do what I do best,” he said. “Drive very, very fast, do lots of power slides and put on a proper show.”
He also promised to take Evans for a spin in his Ford Fiesta RS WRC and to teach the car-mad broadcaster how to do the famed 'Scandinavian flick', the technique of sliding a car sideways around a corner as used by rally drivers. “It's going to be a lot of fun,” admitted Solberg.
CarFest encapsulates Evans' dream of the perfect family festival featuring three of his greatest passions – great cars, live music and scrumptious food – while simultaneously raising much needed funds for BBC Children in Need.
The first event, CarFest South, was held at 1979 Formula 1 World Champion Jody Scheckter's Laverstoke Park Farm in Hampshire over the August Bank Holiday weekend and was hailed as 'a brilliant success' by Evans. The mix of memorable high-octane action, breathtaking aerial displays and sparkling live sets by top bands as well as a whole host of other superb family entertainment enthralled all ages. And now, a fortnight later, the radio personality's glittering festival is all set for a repeat performance, this time in the glorious grounds of Cholmondeley Castle - and with the addition of some rally driving heroics from Solberg.
Although the original 20,000 tickets were an immediate sell-out, an extended licence has enabled organisers to offer some additional day, weekend and VIP tickets. A third of the ticket price goes to BBC Children in Need.