Rally Driver Mad

Rally Driver Mad

Mads Østberg is one of the most expressive drivers in the World Rally Championship, enormously fast but seemingly always unlucky. He has never secured a championship, and he never catches a break, so you kind of want to cut him some slack when he drops some really colossal cussing on live TV.

Østberg actually got fined €1,000 for this “expletive-laden tirade on live television” as Motorsport.com put it. I might describe this as “cathartic venting” myself.

Here is Østberg at Rally Sardinia, suffering a puncture with two stages to go. He is not pleased:

As we can see, his frustration is contagious, with his codriver chucking his pacenotes. (A codriver will protect their pacenotes with their life. I remember when Ott Tänak’s codriver saved his pacenotes after crashing and sinking into a lake. You have to be mad to throw them.) Like all good television programs, the WRC immediately stuck a microphone in Østberg’s face. They expected him to be “colourful,” and that’s what they got:

Again, you have to feel for Østberg here. He won this rally outright in 2012 when his star shone a bit brighter, but now is competing in the lower-level WRC2 category. Even then, he won the event in WRC2 last year and was on track to win it this year as well. What is it to know you are capable and not have the opportunity to shine? His apology is pretty bland, as Motorsport.com details:

“The last 24 hours has been pretty special I must say, we finished a good Rally Sardegna on Sunday,” said Ostberg.

“Unfortunately I did something that I shouldn’t do and I would like to apologise for my language on one of the stage ends.

“I know that shouldn’t happen and it was just purely from the heat of the moment.

“I will make sure that doesn’t happen again in the future and at the same time I want to thank everyone for the massive support that I have felt from my supporters this weekend.

“Especially the last few days thank you so much, and I hope to see you again soon.”

Let Østberg live. He’s been through enough.