Freddy Loix has won the Ypres Rally nine times. This year, ‘Fast Freddy’ is attempting to make it win number 10, while giving the ŠKODA Fabia R5 its FIA European Rally Championship debut.
How confident are you of making it win number 10 in Ypres against such tough competition?
“I’m not somebody that will say that I will win the Ypres Rally because it’s a long rally and there are a lot of very good pilots at the start. But of course, I will not deny that my target is to win.”
How competitive do you think the new ŠKODA Fabia R5 will be on the fast and technical Ypres stages?
“I think the ŠKODA Fabia R5 will be very competitive on the Ypres stages, but it’s up to me to adapt myself to the new car – which I will certainly have to do well when I drive at over 170kph.”
It’s a new car, but how well do you know the Fabia R5?
“I have already done thousands of kilometres with the car, so I think I know it pretty well!”
Having helped to develop the Fabia R5, what other ERC events do you think the car would do well on?
“For sure the fast rallies, Barum and that sort of rally, will suit the Fabia R5 very well, but I’m pretty sure that the car will be good and competitive on all ERC events.”
Will the Fabia R5 be run by ŠKODA Motorsport or another team – as in 2014, when Bernard Munster ran your winning Fabia S2000?
“My winning team BMA will run my car in Ypres again this year.”
What makes Ypres so special and what makes you come back each year?
“Ypres is the most important rally in Belgium, the best organised and it is also a round of the Belgian rally championship. And of course, there is a good after-party!”
What advice can you give to the ERC Junior drivers, especially the ones contesting Ypres for the first time?
“My advice for the ERC Junior drivers would be to look very closely where, and how, to cut the corners.”