Subaru star Petter Solberg has paid tribute to former team-mate Colin McRae after the Scot was killed in a helicopter accident at the weekend.

The pair were team-mates at Ford in both 1999 and 2000 as Solberg started out on his WRC career before becoming rivals at the top of the sport when the Norwegian switched to McRae's old Subaru team.

The 2003 WRC champion had built a close friendship with McRae during their time working together, and he admitted he was shocked to receive the news of his passing.

"It was terrible to be given the news that my good friend Colin and his five year-old son Johnny, died in a helicopter-crash Saturday evening," he said. "Colin was one of my closest friends and it is thanks to him I have achieved so much in rallying.

"Colin's passion for motorsport made him the most popular driver in the world, and it is unbelievable that he is no longer among us. I am so glad I got to know Colin.

"Pernilla and I send our deepest condolences to his wife Alison and their daughter Hollie. Our thoughts are also with the families of Ben Porcelli and Graeme Duncan, who also died in this terrible accident."