I guess I landed the deal after my efforts for Peugeot UK in 2014/2015. That was a privateer, UK deal really and I managed to trouble the works Opel guys with the R2-spec 208. Opel must have been impressed as I had a summons to see them and check out the factory. The minute I walked into the place I signed on the spot – it was hugely different to anything I’d experienced and massively impressive. It’s not often that a young British rally driver gets an opportunity like that.
My programme for 2016 was built around tackling the six qualifying rounds – in Ireland, Portugal, Belgium, Estonia, Czech Republic and Latvia – of the Junior class of the European Championship in the Opel Adam R2. It was really important for me to continue my career progression and I felt the Adam, run by the factory, was the best way for me to do that.
I had two German team-mates this season, both of them backed by the German Federation, the ADAC, and I fared really well against them. One of them, Marijan Griebel, pipped me at the final hurdle for overall Junior honours after we suffered a mechanical failure in the final round in Latvia, but I managed to beat him to the two-wheel-drive class award. I was delighted to have beaten 37 other drivers in two-wheel-drive cars. It was a shame, because I’d finished on the podium in the first five rounds, including taking a maiden win on the penultimate event, Barum Rally Zlin in the Czech Republic.