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“It is a memory for life!” said a clearly moved Pontus Tidemand on winning the Rally China Longyou in November 2015. The new ŠKODA Fabia R5 held the demanding track under the skilful hand of Tidemand and his then partner Emil Axelsson to beat the competition. The season’s highlight for the car could not have been more convincing and Tidemand praised his car, almost as part of the team, for running perfectly even in the toughest conditions.

The China Rally began in 1997. It is part of the Asia Pacific Rally Championship, but in 2016 will be part of the World Rally Championship season.

Swedish national Tidemand, 26, joined the ŠKODA team last year and immediately began his winning streak. But tackling the roads of Longyou was no easy task, as he admits. “I must say that it was a huge challenge. I drove these stages for the first time and the roads were tricky and demanding in themselves, but with mud and rain they got extremely slippery and difficult to get through. We were as careful as we could in order to survive the day and steered the car as steadily as possible.” You can judge the conditions for yourself in the video.