18-year-old rally driver Mille Johansson from Sweden leads the Junior World Rally Championship after his sensational victory in Rally Sweden a month ago. With his first WRC win under his belt, Mille and co-driver Johan Grönvall now aim for gold in this year’s FIA Junior European Rally Championship.

”Rally Sweden definitely exceeded expectations. It was my first rally in a four-wheel-drive car and my first time in a WRC event. We put in a lot of effort, especially in the preparations before the race, which allowed us to be well-prepared,” says Mille Johansson.

Despite the victory in Rally Sweden and leading the Junior WRC, Mille and Johan continue to follow their long-term plan and will compete in the FIA ERC this year. The plan, developed in collaboration with the Motorsport Academy, included competing in Rally Sweden to measure themselves in the world championship, and gain valuable experience for the future. Meanwhile, the FIA ERC was the primary goal for the season from the outset.

Mille will continue his long and successful partnership with the team IKsport Racing from Slovenia, which will operate the two-wheel-drive Opel Corsa Rally4 they will compete with in this year’s Junior ERC. Mille conducted his first tests for the team back in 2021 and has competed with IKsport for two seasons.

”I’m looking forward to this year’s FIA ERC season. There are many new events that we have no experience from, and the field looks really competitive. We will complete a full season in a brand-new Opel Corsa and continue our great partnership with IKsport. We will also get to drive the Opel on gravel, which we haven’t done before,” continues Mille.

This year’s FIA Junior European Rally Championship consists of six rounds, starting in Hungary in mid-April and ending in Poland in mid-October. The third round, from June 13th to 15th, will be held at home in Sweden with the BAUHAUS Royal Rally of Scandinavia in Karlstad. Mille and Johan achieved their best result in the FIA ERC last year in Värmland, where they challenged for a podium finish.

”One of the highlights of this year is the Royal Rally of Scandinavia at home in Sweden. We had good pace there last year, and this year it feels like we have built up even more speed. It’s always fun to compete in Sweden with great support from the crowd, and it feels like it gives an extra boost in confidence,” says Mille.

After a challenging but educational year in the FIA ERC in 2023, Mille and Johan are now aiming to compete for the championship title.

”We competed in the Junior ERC throughout last season as a learning year for this year. We have our sights set on the championship title,” concludes Mille.