Tests in Rovaniemi: road to new season

This week, Nikolay Gryazin completed the first round of testing in preparation for the next season.

The 3-day Škoda Fabia R5 tests took place near the arctic city of Rovaniemi. They were hosted by SnowRallyRings, a motorsport complex with a variety of special stages and unique geographical location which allows drivers to get a head start in preparation for the new season.

The team brought both test and main cars for testing. This is a standard drill: try new set-ups on the test car, find the ones that fit best, apply them to the main car and complete the stages several times to make sure everything works as expected. The daylight hours in Rovaniemi are very short, which means that most of the testing was held after dark.
Nikolay Gryazin: "The tests helped us get ready for winter and reminded what high-speed racing on snowy and icy surfaces feels like. We covered about 450 km in 3 days and had enough time to work on the settings. We got a new suspension from Škoda Fabia R5 Evo for this round of testing and could compare it with the old version.

The testing went quite well. We have a better understanding of what to expect from our car in the snow as this type of surface can be less predictable than gravel or tarmac. Looking forward to try it out on a race course."
Nikolay uses this testing base in Rovaniemi every year and knows it well. For this reason his main co-driver Yaroslav Fedorov was allowed to spend time with his family. Dmitry Lebedik, co-driver of the gravel crew, covered for him during testing.