Extra Big Happy Birthday to Henning Solberg!

How can you even begin to describe the glory that is Henning Solberg? First off, you’ve got to love

…his name. Sometimes, I randomly say, “Henning” because it makes me happy inside.

…his driving style that one could describe as “destructive.” Fans describe it as “spectacular” and “crowd-pleasing.” No one can roll a car like our beloved Henning.

…his orange car. Orange!

…his friendly-sounding Norwegian accent. He’s a friendly guy, period. Look how nice he is to the koala.

…he’s silly, yet fiercely competitive. See how he tries in vain to ride Manfred Stohl’s unicycle? Or how he and Petter turn Christmas into PS2/remote control car deathmatches?

…he’s just a fun character. A normal person is shell-shocked and frustrated when they roll their $500,000 rally car. Henning laughs.

…he also has strong character. He doesn’t give up. He turns these rolls and mistakes into reasons why his fans love him so much.
Finally, let’s reminisce of Henning’s most “interesting” moments of 2006.

1. First and foremost, his huuuge roll in Sweden. Fate decides to play another joke on a Solberg, and dumps a carload of snow into the car. Then, after fans finally push his car right-side-up, he can’t see through his pulverized windscreen. Henning tries sticking his head out the window, dog style, until codriver Cato Menkarud kicks it out entirely (shoving his rear end into the onboard cameras). And don’t ask me how they managed to drive the rest of the stage with snow flying into their eyeballs. Especially when the really huge chunks were flying in off of the bonnet at first. And Henning’s reaction at stage end? “I rolled the car! Hehehe…sorry for that!”

2. Hot water spraying onto his face and feet in Cyprus.

3. Hot water spraying onto his feet in New Zealand.

4. Rolling the car (again) in New Zealand. Losing the windscreen (again). And driving through a couple stages in the driving rain. Rain? Snow? The only thing he’s missing now is hail.

5. The big crash in Australia. The crash mowed down ten trees and left him 30 meters off the road. But he bounced back for New Zealand.

6. The first stage win in Argentina, that he shared with brother Petter. “My first stage win, that’s good….I’ve got to share everything with my brother…but not my wife!

7. The first podium in Turkey. Big, big smiles–and it wasn’t because he rolled the car!

8. Setting some of the fastest stage times…without brakes! How…?

9. His duet with Colin Clark of Aha’s “Take on Me.” Maybe not so great, but memorable.

10. His very sideways showboat drive through Cyprus’ spectator stage. Topped off with a donut. He’d risk a three-rally ban, just to entertain us fans.

Oh, the grand adventures of Henning Solberg. Many more outrageous moments to come, I’m sure. He’s Henning, after all. All our love, mate. And maybe he loves us too.

Henning likes koalas! A very wet watersplash First podium in Turkey 2006

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January 15, 2007. Appreciation, Ford, Motorsport, Peugeot, Rally, Solberg, The Adventures of Henning Solberg, WRC.

One Comment

  1. hicham wrc replied:

    hi solberg im hicham im from moroccco how are you my freinds im very happy today for writethis lettre for you you are very good driver in world i loves you drive you are very speed and very intellegent and gentill my dream pilot in world rally championship wrc is big dream my messae for you continue for champion ships good hicham welcome

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