In the run-up to the first event after WRF was born, the Rallye de France – Alsace, we said that Petter Solberg was an asset both to Ford and the WRC as a whole, and as such he should definitely be on the payroll in 2013.
He proceeded to have one of the most random accidents ever seen: sliding off the road, poughing through a vineyard, crossing back over the road, into the other side of the vineyard and into a telegraph pole, which duly collapsed and blew up.
Thankfully none of the many fans or photographers were harmed, and Petter and co-driver Chris Patterson were unscathed. Although it’s quite likely that one winery’s produce will soon feature a bouquet of spilt brake fluid, the scent of a flash burn in the nose and trace elements of Ford paint in the bottom of the glass.
We then suggested that Juho Hänninen was preparing a logical step up from his Intercontinental Rally Challenge, European Rally Championship and SWRC titles to a full season of the WRC next year in a MINI Portugal entry – which we wholeheartedly approved of.
Juho then took part in the Rallye Sanremo and was pushing to keep up with the leading Ford Fiesta of Giandomenico Basso when he plunged off the road and landed four-square on the roof of some unfortunate local family. Rather than Fiddler on the Roof it was (Škoda) Fabia on the Roof.
So that’s two out of two. We now declare this to be a jinx with a 100% record of achievement in the field of messing up the day of any driver we deem to be a good egg, a shining light or a brilliant talent. So start sending in pots full of cash now, drivers, or we’ll tell the world that you’re a megastar in the making and then see what happens!