Ford's Ian Slater paid tribute to the people of Norway at the unveiling of Ford's new World Rally Championship base ahead of this week's Rally Finland.
In addition to the factory Ford Fiesta RS WRCs, M-Sport also runs private cars in the championship for Norwegian drivers Henning Solberg and Mads Ostberg and, with the series returning to a Nordic country for the second time this season, Slater talked about last week's bomb attack and shootings in Norway.
"You always get a great reception when you come to the Nordic countries," said Slater. "We're very mindful of what has happened in Norway, particularly with Henning and Mads here in our team. My earnest hope is that despite these terrible atrocities the people there are able to preserve what is so special about the Nordic way of life, the freedom and the respect they have for other cultures and nationalities."
Norway hosted its own round of the World Rally Championship in 2009. This year's Rally Sweden crossed the border into Norway for one stage and next season's event is expected to spend a day in Norway.
Solberg's brother Petter posted the following message on his website: "While the Petter Solberg World Rally Team continue their championship in Finland, their thoughts are very much with the family and friends of those affected by the recent atrocities at home."