In a stunning display of driving skill and courage, Josef Berez, a man made internet-famous with his godly control of a flame-spitting Audi S1, has now turned his attention to something newer, something slightly more responsive, and something just as frighteningly-fast. For classic rally fans, this might be something slightly sacrilegious – but hey, it’s hard to argue with shorter overhangs and modern technology.
The steed of choice is none other than a hawkeye STI, although this one comes with a small nuclear reactor under the hood. Turbo power would be a gross understatement with this powerplant, since whenever the car is straight and Berez depresses the throttle, the monster surges forth with a velocity to rival a Saturn 5 rocket. In fact, that power is enough to spin all four tires at corner exit consistently, and Berez must be on his game to catch the snappy slide.
His approach into the corner is interesting – constantly balancing the car by prodding the throttle. However, this stab at the gas does occasionally push the front wide, forcing Berez to lift and drop revs before matting it after the apex to ride a small amount of oversteer out of the corner. This mid-corner understeer exacerbates the oversteer once the throttle is applied, but Berez manages to hang onto the slithering tail at the corner exit.
Perhaps the excessive amount of power – somewhere around 600 horses – forced the team to run a somewhat understeer-prone setup, but perhaps that’s just basic Subaru behavior. Nevertheless, the car neutralizes at high speed and carries some incredible speed while showing remarkable stability through the quicker sections. Nevertheless, Berez is plagued by a recalcitrant front end and the understeer was noticeable on this hairpin-heavy course, but the Slovakian ace managed to minimize the problem, as expected.