Rally Finland, take a bow. Everybody’s favourite reason for travelling to Jyväskylä each summer has delivered news that doesn’t include the word ‘postponed,’ ‘cancelled’ or even ‘virus’ and for that, DirtFish thanks you.
The news is that 18-time world rally winner Miikka Anttila will join Rally Finland as deputy clerk of the course for this year’s 70th anniversary event.
With 220 WRC starts, Anttila is the most experienced co-driver in the history of the championship (that’s 24 more starts than anybody else). He’s tackled his home WRC round 20 times and celebrated victory on three occasions with Jari-Matti Latvala.
“There will be a lot to learn,” said Anttila, who has worked on the event previously, acting as the competitor relations officer on the 2006 rally, “which makes this even more exciting and motivates me a great deal.
“It can be said that, until now, I have been a customer and a service subscriber in this event and that I am now switching over to the service provider side, so the starting points will be quite different.
“Acting as the competitor relations officer a while back gave me a little better understanding of the bigger picture, so to speak, but joining the Rally Finland top officials will certainly open my eyes even more.
“It will be great to see things from the other side too, outside of the cockpit of a rally car.
“I hope that my expertise will benefit the rally organisation. I believe I can bring some perspective to the work and at least I’ve got the right references – I’ve seen what others do and what I’ve dove myself.
“Rally Finland is already at such a high level that it can be quite difficult to see much room for improvement in the current situation. However, maintaining that high level and staying in the forefront of development presents a great challenge.”
Rally Finland clerk of the course Kai Tarkiainen added: “We warmly welcome Miikka into our crew.
“Working alongside myself and [fellow] deputy clerk of the course Kari Nuutinen, Miikka will certainly have a lot to give, especially when the “secret art of rally-making” starts to unfold.
“During these exceptional times we currently live in, the Rally Finland organisation too is planning the future with very close team-spirit, and having Miikka joining us is positive news for the entire organisation.”
Rally Finland’s statement added the following, regarding the current calendar: “At present, the rally organisation is following the emergency regulations and orders of Finland’s government very closely, as well as the instructions of the Federation Internationale de L´Automobile FIA and WRC Promoter and will keep publishing up-to-date information of any possible changes and required actions on all their channels when needed.”
Rally Finland is currently expected to run from August 6-9.