Oliver Solberg will compete for Hyundai Motorsport in next season’s WRC2 class alongside Ole Christian Veiby, with potential Rally1 outings possible in 2022.
Solberg, son of 2003 World Champion Petter, is currently one of the hottest up and coming talents in the sport and will graduate from WRC3 where in 2020 he drove a Skoda Fabia Rally2.
Veiby will remain with the team alongside new teammate Solberg, with the Norwegian having secured three podiums in the class this season where he finished fourth in the championship standings.
Both drivers will begin their 2021 campaigns in R5-spec i20’s, but will move to the new Rally2 car as soon as its available midway through next season.
“For me to be joining Hyundai Motorsport is incredible,” said Solberg.
“The team’s recent achievements say it all – twice manufacturers’ champions in WRC, along with a successful Customer Racing division.
“It’s an exciting time to join a team like this. To have the chance to work for these guys, it’s not just a real thrill for me, it will be fantastic to learn from everyone.”
While teammate Veiby added: “I am very happy to stay within the Hyundai Motorsport family,”
“I have really enjoyed competing with the Hyundai i20 R5 this year; I’ve learned a lot and I’m pleased to continue the work we have started.
“The 2020 season didn’t turn out the way we wanted. We took three podiums out of the five WRC 2 events we contested, but there is no doubt we really wanted to win and to be on the top step of the podium.
“It has been a very different and challenging year, and I’m looking forward to having another year to fight properly in WRC 2.“
Hyundai returned to the WRC in 2014 and has fast become one of the leading teams in the sport, with Principal Andrea Adamo having led the squad to back-to-back Manufacturer titles in both 2019 and 2020, with Jari Huttunen also having secured the WRC3 crown driving a i20 R5 also.
The Italian spoke of his commitment to continue their young driver program: “On the back of our second consecutive manufacturers’ title in the WRC, it is important for us to reaffirm our commitment to young talent and rising stars,”
“We are pleased to welcome Oliver Solberg into the Hyundai Motorsport family, to join Ole Christian, with whom we have already worked this year.
“Both are exciting talents and definitely ‘ones-to-watch’,” commented Adamo.
“Oliver, of course, has a very well known surname but he has already started to prove himself in his own right, with results like the WRC 3 win in Estonia,”
Ole Christian, too, had some promising results in our i20 R5 during the year. We are confident that both young talents will demonstrate the potential not only of our R5 car initially, but also our brand-new Hyundai i20 N Rally2 car which we expect will make its competitive debut mid-season.”
Adamo was also quick to add that the afore mentioned Huttunen will also remain part of the Hyundai setup following his WRC3 title in 2020.
“We can’t talk about rising stars without mentioning Jari Huttunen, who has been linked to Hyundai since the end of 2017,” he said.
“He has had a fantastic season in 2020 including the Polish title and the WRC 3 championship. We are working on Jari’s programme for 2021 and more will be known on that in due course.”
The 2021 season is set to get underway on Rallye Monte Carlo between January 21-24.