Norwegian rally star Andreas Mikkelsen will team up with Paul Nagle for Rally Australia, Volkswagen has confirmed.
Mikkelsen had to sit out
last weekend's round in Germany, as his regular co-driver, Mikko Markkula, was diagnosed with two fractured vertebrae just a day or so before the event was due to begin.
Now in order to give him sufficient time to recover, Nagle has agreed to take the Finn's place in the passenger seat of the #9 Polo R WRC.
“We are pleased to have found such a competent replacement so soon after Mikko's withdrawal,” said Volkswagen Motorsport director Jost Capito. “Paul has a wealth of rallying experience and, with his professional approach, will definitely meet our expectations.
"We wish Mikko a speedy recovery. He can now take his time and concentrate fully on ensuring he gets back to full fitness. As soon as he has recovered from his injury, he will take his place next to Andreas again.”
“It is obviously a great shame that Mikko will also be missing for the Rally Australia. However, the good news is that we have found a good replacement,” added Mikkelsen.
“For me, it was important to find a co-driver, with whom I can communicate in English in the cockpit. Mikko and I changed the style of our pace notes ahead of this season, and both switched from our native language to English. It is an advantage for me not to have to change language again.”