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20.1.2019 - Mikko Eskelinen and co-driver Arto Kapanen fullfilled their goals in Arctic Lapland Rally - Despite brake problems the Winter Wonderland rally adventure was a big enjoyment

In season 2003 Mitsubishi Ralliart build total 17 Mitsubishi Lancer WRC Rally Cars. Chassis number 16 is located in Finland and the car is owned by Mikko Eskelinen. At the moment Chassis number 16 is the only one which is in active rallying as Mikko with his co-driver Arto Kapanen competed in 55th edition of Arctic Lapland Rally with ex-works World Rally Car.

In traditional "Winter Rally Grand Prix" Arctic Lapland rally, which included 10 fast-paced and tricky special stages and 201,73 special stage kilometres Eskelinen and Kapanen kept their promoses and finished the Arctic adventure in top-10 position.

Season 2020 got a highly desired start as several Finnish Rally Champion and many who wants to collect the title had upgraded their car into Skoda Fabia R5 EVO. Therefore it wasn't a surprise that top-3 positions in FRC1-group were collected with the new car and in total of top-9 positions were driven with new or old specifications Skoda Fabia R5 rally car.

- Before the event I told that with season 2003 specifications World Rally Car cannot match to a modern R5-group car. But because from season 2008 on I've greatly enjoyed competing in this rally, I couln't be away from it. Therefore our goals were set only for the enjoyment and that is what we surely got, Eskelinen tells.

- My 14th Arctic Lapland Rally was a big adventure as we also collect top-10 position and were fastest non-R5-car in group of FRC1. Five Finnish Rally Championship points among multiple Finnish Rally Champions and young new guns is an excellent results for a driver who is nearly turning into senior age, Eskelinen continues.

FRC1-group was won by reigning Finnish Rally Champion Teemu Asunmaa, who dramatically took the winning position in final stage of the rally as leader Emil Lindholm made a mistake and dropped into third position. Overall winner of the rally was Toyota Gazoo Racing manufacturer driver Kalle Rovanperä. Mercedez AMG Fomula-1 driver Valtteri Bottas was 9th fastest in overall classifications.

Mikko Eskelinen doesn't drive in other Finnish Rally Championship events as he now focuses for the international racing season which starts in April.

- For the past 12 seasons I've enjoyed a lot in rallying and in international racing arenas. Therefore season 2020 will be the same as there are some things still to be improve; In season I won Lamborghini Super Trofeo Asian Championship series and in season 2019 I collect bronze medal in Lamborghini Super Trofeo European series. For me Arctic Lapland Rally has been a traditional season opener and it'll continue to be so also in next year, Eskelinen shared his thoughts.

Season 2020 racing plans will be published in first weeks of Fenruary 2002.

Final results 55th Arctic Lapland Rally 2020: FRC1-group, top-3:
1. Kalle Rovanperä & Jonne Halttunen, Toyota Yaris WRC, 1:38:02,8
2. Teemu Asunmaa & Jani Salo, Skoda Fabia R5 Evo, +3:27,6sec
3. Eerik Pietarinen & Miikka Anttila, Skoda Fabia R5 Evo, +4:15,9sec
4. Emil Lindholm & Mikael Korhonen, Skoda Fabia R5 Evo, +4:38,9sec
---
9. Valtteri Bottas & Timo Rautiainen, Citroën DS3 WRC, +9:54,1sec
10. Mikko Eskelinen & Arto Kapanen, Mitsubishi Lancer WRC Step2, +10:22,8sec

Click and view videos and images from the event:
- Arctic Lapland Rally 2020 EK1: Aittajärvi: https://youtu.be/-C0puM8lhMM
- Arctic Lapland Rally 2020 EK2: Mäntyvaara #1: https://youtu.be/_v2M_E3VXmE
- Arctic Lapland Rally 2020 EK3: Kaihuavaara: https://youtu.be/OxGZ0DgajjE
- Arctic Lapland Rally 2020 EK4: Jyrhämäjärvi: https://youtu.be/_EmgC-81hCQ
- Arctic Lapland Rally 2020 EK5: Mäntyvaara #2: https://youtu.be/x6Kuq06Dk6s
- Arctic Lapland Rally 2020 EK7: Mäntyvaara #3: https://youtu.be/KCb9PIMXMRY
- Arctic Lapland Rally 2020 EK8: Sarriojärvi: https://youtu.be/ktyprfBshSE
- Arctic Lapland Rally 2020 EK9: Untamovaara: https://youtu.be/2wMtvy4JQcA

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Click and view videos and images from the event:
- WRC-winter tests @ Nilsiä: https://youtu.be/jPYxwQV8Ui8
- WRC-winter tests @ Uurainen: https://youtu.be/ZBsnSvM81qI
- WRC-co-driver experience @ Mökkiperä: https://youtu.be/gs4FxVtj5jI
- Mikko & Veeti Eskelinen tests World Rally Car: https://youtu.be/kcoyQpcB_x4

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Mikko Eskelisen kotisivut on suunnitellut ja toteuttanut MediaGuru Jack Bacon - Digitaalisen median tuotantostudio - www.mediaguru.fi