The 2019 FIA European Rally Championship is set for a thrilling showdown in Hungary this weekend week and Chris Ingram has a chance to become the first British driver in 50 years to clinch the title.

Co-driven by Ross Whittock, the Manchester ace is up against Poland’s Łukasz Habaj/Daniel Dymurski (ŠKODA Fabia R5) and Russia’s Alexey Lukyanuk/Alexey Arnautov (Citroën C3 R5).

Heading to Rally Hungary, Ingram leads the standings by 19 points from Habaj with Lukyanuk just nine points further back. Based on those numbers alone it might appear that Ingram is in the ascendency, but it’s certainly not that simple. A maximum of 39 points are up for grabs in Hungary and with ERC drivers counting their best six scores over the season, Habaj and Lukyanuk are very much in the hunt despite the gap to Ingram. While Habaj and Lukyanuk are set to drop four and three points respectively from their eventual totals, Ingram could end up discounting 12 points from his final score following the finish.

With limited funding, Ingram is within sight of an incredible achievement – so how is the Toksport WRT ŠKODA Fabia R5 driver feeling ahead of this huge weekend.

What would winning the ERC title mean to you?
“Winning the ERC would be a life ambition achieved. It would mean an enormous amount to me to be able to wake up every day having achieved a dream and would give me a huge amount of self-belief and satisfaction. This is everything to me.”

How would it change your life?
“Winning would make a huge difference to me personally and to my career and give me an immense sense of pride. Having the ERC title to my name would be a huge opportunity to use the publicity of the accolade to boost my profile massively in the UK and Europe, which would hopefully help me take the next step up in my career in 2020.”

In your mind, what do you need to do to win the title?
“I will drive consistently and fast like in Barum and I believe that will be enough. I also need a strong car and team, like we always have. Result-wise, if Alexey wins, I need to finish on the podium. If Łukasz wins, I need to finish second to him or ahead of both of them.”

Of your two title rivals, who do you fear the most?
“I do not fear anyone. I am driving against myself and want to become the best version of myself. However, I have huge respect for Alexey and Łukasz and their co-drivers. If I had to say one driver, I would say Alexey because he is already a champion and he drives at a savage pace.”

How will you prepare for the event?
“We will test before, which will be critical, and do our usual preparation. Psychologically, I am feeling excited, relaxed and confident, this is what I need the most.”

Chris Ingram and Ross Whittock wear Stilo WRC DES 8860 helmets.