Volkswagen to contest the ADAC Rallye Deutschland with a German driver
Wolfsburg (18 July 2011)
The development of the Polo R WRC for entry in the 2013 FIA World Rally Championship is in full swing. As at the upcoming Neste Oil Rally Finland (28 to 30 July 2011) Volkswagen Motorsport will also be fielding two cars of the Volkswagen Group’s Škoda brand at the ADAC Rallye Deutschland (18 to 21 August 2011). And again two young racers will have the chance to qualify for future runs in the Polo R WRC. For the ADAC Rallye Deutschland Volkswagen Motorsport is signing the German Christian Riedemann and the Dutchman Hans Weijs Jnr.
‘The ADAC Rallye Deutschland marks the second step in our talent assessment programme,’ explains Volkswagen Motorsport Director Kris Nissen, who has established similar young talent promotion programmes on the race track before with great success. ‘As in Finland, we’ve again selected two young drivers who have already shown great potential in their brief careers. They are now receiving the unique opportunity to recommend themselves in the toughest competitive conditions for a slot in the Volkswagen rally team.’ The cars to be fielded are two near-270-hp (199kW) Škoda Fabia which are prepared according to the regulations for the WRC Super 2000 category. Both cars are competing in the colours of ‘Wings for Life’. The charity whose ambassadors include Formula 1 world champion Sebastian Vettel promotes research to cure spinal cord injuries.
Car number one will be driven by the German Christian Riedemann (23, Sulingen). The co-driver reading the road-book to him will be Michael Wenzel (35, Mehlingen). For Riedemann, who is a candidate for support by the ADAC Sport Foundation and is assisted by the ADAC Club Weser-Ems, this will be the first run in a Super 2000 vehicle. In addition, the trained vehicle mechatronics specialist is the only German to contest the WRC Academy for young drivers held as part of the FIA World Rally Championship.
‘The WRC Academy plays a major role in my development of becoming a professional rally driver. The competition is pretty fierce and those who prove their skills here may have the chance to move up into a higher series later,’ says Riedemann. After two rounds Riedemann/Wenzel are ranking in seventh place here. Prior to this Riedemann won the ADAC Rallye Junior Cup (2009) and contested the German Rally Championship. Successes at the Rallye Deutschland are nothing new to the driver from Lower Saxony – in 2010 he secured victory here at a junior one-make cup.
The second car as well will be driven by a racer who has already entered his name on the winners’ lists of the Rallye Deutschland: Last year in Trier Hans Weijs junior (24) secured the maximum number of points in the FIA Junior WRC – the predecessor of the WRC Academy. In the 2010 annual classification the Dutchman was ultimately the runner-up. In 2009 and 2008 the trained vehicle mechanic gathered international experience in the Junior WRC as well. At the past Ypern Rally in Belgium, a round of the Intercontinental Rally Challenge (IRC) with a strong field of entrants, Weijs and his Belgian co-driver Bjorn Degandt (36) in the Škoda Fabia clinched third place in front of clearly more seasoned rivals.
[Source: Volkswagen Motorsport]