Qatar M-Sport World Rally Team driver Mads Ostberg is aiming to fight for a good position on Rally Italia Sardegna this week.
Ostberg hasn't had much luck since his third place finish in Sweden back in February and after more woe in Greece recently, the Crash.net columnist
took in Rally Aurskog/Høland, the fifth round in the Norwegian Rally Championship, earlier this month, coming away with a morale boosting victory.
“The rally we did in Norway was all about building our confidence and enjoying ourselves, and from that side of things, I think it was really good preparation for Sardinia,” Ostberg explained ahead of round seven in the 2013 World Rally Championship.
“We've not had the best start to the season, so it was important to go to an event where there was no pressure and drive as fast as we could with no problems.”
Ostberg has competed in Sardinia five times to date and in recent years has done well, finishing fifth in 2011 and fourth in 2012. He will be keen now to go one better and get back on the rostrum.
“It's an event that I really enjoy. It suits us [Jonas Andersson, my co-driver, and I] and it suits the Fiesta RS WRC so I know that we can fight for a good position. We've done well there in the past and – like at all events this year – we want to be fighting for the podium. We just need to find a good rhythm and bring that same enjoyment that we had in Aurskog/Høland,” Ostberg continued.
“It will be an intense event for sure. It's a lot earlier in the year than usual so the heat will take its toll and the days are also very long with lots of stages, early mornings and late finishes. But we should be okay – we just need to ensure that we look after ourselves as well as the car!
“The stages are also very technical so you need to be very precise in your driving and make sure that the pacenotes are as detailed as they can be.
"Hopefully this could be our rally!” he concluded.