Swede Mille Johansson will compete in the first round of the FIA Junior European Rally Championship this weekend, as the premiere takes place on gravel in Hungary. Together with co-driver Johan Grönvall, they have high ambitions for this year’s season.

Mille and Johan arrive at the ERC opener as JWRC leaders, having won the Junior WRC at Rally Sweden in February. Despite leading in the World Championship, Mille sticks to his plan to focus on the Junior ERC this season.

”It’s going to be fun and challenging to compete in the FIA ERC again this year. For me, the JWRC victory has no significance in this context; now the focus is on the European Championship, and our season truly begins. Of course, it would have been nice to continue in the JWRC, but we have a plan that we’re following,” says Mille.

”I have a good feeling about this year, and it’s nice to get started again. We have a year’s worth of experience in the FIA ERC now, which I hope will be to our advantage. We know what the European Championship entails and what needs to be done,” says Johan.

In the FIA Junior European Rally Championship, all teams compete with two-wheel-drive cars on Hankook tires. This year, Mille continues his successful collaboration with IKsport Racing from Slovenia and will drive an Opel Corsa Rally4.

The junior season consists of six rounds, starting this weekend in Hungary. The season continues with the Canary Islands in early May, the BAUHAUS Royal Rally of Scandinavia in Sweden, Karlstad, in June, followed by Estonia, the United Kingdom, and Poland.

”The feeling ahead of the season is good. There’s still a bit to learn in the new car, but it feels strong and steady, so I believe we’ll be able to build a high pace when all parameters align,” Mille continues.

Ahead of this weekend’s opening rally in Hungary, Mille and Johan have conducted a two-day test together with the team in their Opel Corsa.

After a learning year in the FIA ERC in 2023, Mille and Johan have high hopes for both this weekend’s premiere in Hungary and, not least, the rest of the season.

”We know it’s going to be tough, and that we’re not the only ones aiming for first place. But we’ll drive as fast as we can and see how far it takes us,” says Mille.

”We’re setting the bar high as usual. With a lot of determination and hard work, I’m convinced this will turn out well,” concludes Johan.

Rally Hungary is the first of six rounds in the FIA Junior European Rally Championship. The competition takes place on gravel, with 13 stages over three days. The event starts on Friday evening and finishes on Sunday. In the Junior ERC, a total of 17 cars will start in the season opener, including Swedish National Team teammate Calle Carlberg, also in an Opel Corsa.”