Oliver Solberg signs two-year deal with Hyundai Motorsport
Oliver joins World Rally Champion team for the next step of his career
History-making 19-year-old to tackle full WRC 2 campaign in 2021
Andrea Adamo welcomes Oliver to the Hyundai Motorsport family
"We can celebrate this deal today, but tomorrow the hard work starts."
For Oliver Solberg, the teenage dream has come true. He's a World Rally Championship factory driver with two-time title-winning manufacturer Hyundai Motorsport.
The 19-year-old has signed a two-year contract to drive for the Alzenau-based Korean marque in 2021/22.
Oliver will undertake a full programme of WRC 2 events next season, starting that campaign with a current i20 R5 before switching to the i20 N Rally2 once the new car is ready in the middle of the year.
"This is the next part of the dream," smiled the 19-year-old. "I have one part of the dream still to make.
"To join Hyundai Motorsport is fantastic. To be driving for the reigning World Rally Champion manufacturer... this is a big part of the dream for me!
"Even saying the words: "I'm a Hyundai Motorsport driver..." it just keeps making me smile. I have a lot of people to thank for helping me to get to this point, of course my family and all of the team around me, but also Hyundai Motorsport team principal Andrea Adamo and team manager Alain Penasse. They have given me this incredible opportunity.
"But this is another step for me. It definitely feels like this is a new chapter. I have made the start to my career now this is the next part. But, it's like anything: we can celebrate this deal today, but tomorrow we start the hard work to make the most of working with the world champions."
Oliver's co-driver Aaron Johnston is similarly delighted with the news of a new challenge coming in 2021.
Northern Irishman Johnston said: "I've loved and lived this sport for as long as I can remember and to be taking this step up with Oliver is amazing. Of course, I want to thank not just Hyundai Motorsport, but the Solberg family.
"I've co-driven for Oliver for the last two years and watched his progression – he's a fantastic driver, but I honestly feel this is just the beginning of our adventure!"
A string of stunning results stretching from America's west coast to Europe's four corners have already demonstrated Oliver's pace. The son of triple FIA world champion Petter Solberg is ready to follow in his father's footsteps. Footsteps which lead all the way to the very top of the sport.
Hyundai Motorsport team principal Andrea Adamo agrees that Oliver has come of age.
Adamo said: "We are pleased to welcome Oliver Solberg into the Hyundai Motorsport family.
"Oliver has, of course, a very well-known surname but he has already started to prove himself in his own right, with results like the WRC 3 win in Estonia. We are confident a young talent like Oliver will demonstrate the potential not only of our R5 car initially, but also our brand-new Hyundai i20 N Rally2 car which we expect will make its competitive debut mid-season."
Oliver's dream is real and rolling out year-on-year. Last year he followed in father into Subaru's blue overalls, winning the first of three American Rally Association rounds for Subaru Motorsport USA, aged just 17.
Months later, he was making more history by becoming the youngest ever winner of a round of the FIA European Rally Championship (Rally Liepāja, Latvia).
This season, Oliver finished in the top-10 overall on two WRC rounds and won WRC3 at Rally Estonia.