Happy Birthday, Jari-Matti Latvala!

 It’s so exciting to see new talent emerge. I say “new,” but this now-22-year-old Finn has been rallying on the world scene since he was 17. Keeping on with WitWR tradition, here’s a rundown of why I like Jari-Matti.

His name. I say this for everyone, but he truly has an exceptionally awesome name. Jari-Matti Latvala. It just rolls off the tongue.

Great driving. He can post outstanding stage times–top three times, and even a stage win in Norway.

His exuberant personality. He loves to talk, and I love to listen. I was quite thoroughly enchanted with his “21 Fabulous Facts about Jari-Matti Latvala” feature on Rally Radio for his 21st birthday. I learned he has scrambled eggs for breakfast, was an officer in the Finnish military, he’s a natural blonde, and he swims naked in Finland (TMI!).

He is so driven to succeed. It gets him in trouble, sure, but every driver must pass through that phase of their career before they “make it.”

He’s got nerd-chic, yellow-tinted driving glasses.

All in all, he’s a likeable guy who’s a character. I’m sure he’s aiming to win world championships one day, and he’s got a seat in the Stobart VK Ford Focus that will help get him there. In a few years, it’ll be him against Mikko, Atko, Dani, Travis and maybe Andreas Mikkelsen. Jari-Matti is the future. So good luck to him!

Jari-Matti in Monte Carlo 2007     Very cool glasses.


April 13, 2007. Appreciation, Ford, Rally, Rallying, WRC.

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