9 August 2003
Markku Alen - Subaru Team of '93
9 August 2003
As the 555 Subaru team celebrates the 10th anniversary of the Impreza WRC, we spoke to Markku Alen, one of the drivers who competed for the team 10 years ago when the Subaru Impreza made its rally debut in Finland 1993..
What do you put the Impreza's success down to?
The Impreza is a very, very good package. It was very good when it started in 1993, and since then it's continued to make many successful evolutions. The team, Prodrive and Subaru all work well together, which is shown by the impressive results.
Why do you think that although there are only 5 million people in Finland, they seem to dominate world motorsport?
I don't know. We have good people in F1 and rallying - in all motorsports in fact. I'm not sure why, maybe it's something to do with our weather here. In the winter we can drive on the ice lakes and so we do a lot of ice racing, maybe that makes us better. There are also lots of gravel roads in Finland that people can use. I think that it must make people more confident in slippery conditions.
What's your best memory of your rallying career?
My best memory is probably Portugal when I won my first WRC event, or Finland in 1976, when I scored my second WRC win. They both stand out as very good times. Rallying was a lot of fun though, it was always a fun sport and I have many good memories.
It's really close at the top of the Drivers' Championship, who do you think is going end up as World Champion this year?
Hopefully a Finn! But which one? We will see, we will see. I think that whoever wins here at the Thousand Lakes has a very good chance of winning the Championship. It's very likely to be a Finn, but ask me again on Sunday.
Does it feel like 10 years ago that you were here with the Impreza?
It doesn't feel like ten years ago at all. A lot of people ask me what happened on that rally (in 1993), but the truth is that I don't know what happened at all! It was my mistake and that's all I can really say.