MOTORSPORT NEWS Rally

“We have a very good team for 2018” – Jari-Matti Latvala

 Toyota Gazoo Racing World Rally Team enter their second season with renewed hopes of chasing down the 2018 FIA World Rally Championship title with Jari-Matti Latvala, Ott Tänak and Esapekka Lappi.It was an impressive debut year for the team as they took the Yaris WRC to a podium finish in the season opening Rallye Monte-Carlo before following it […]

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Remember the Good Times With the Volkswagen’s All-New Polo R5 GTI Rally Car

Volkswagen ended its WRC program on a high note after capturing its fourth consecutive title in 2016. Even then, that didn’t make it easier for anyone to cope with parting ways with the team’s world-beating Polo racer. In efforts to rekindle that success of old, VW will build a limited run of the 270 horsepower, AWD, […]

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Citroen’s WRC future in doubt as Meeke mentor takes up FIA role

 Yves Matton, a central figure in the careers of both Kris Meeke and Craig Breen, has quit Citroen Racing to become the FIA’s new rally director.The timing of the move, coming less than two weeks before the Monte Carlo Rally and the start of the 2018 World championship, is seen as less than ideal and […]

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WRC to return to Japan in 2019?

A consortium in Japan has announced its plans to bring back the World Rally Championship to the country for the first time since 2010 with initial targets as early as next year. The WRC Japan Round Bid committee confirmed its intentions at the Tokyo Auto Salon show with its ambition to host a WRC round […]

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Citroen’s Yves Matton confirmed as FIA rally director

The FIA has announced that Yves Matton has been appointed Rally Director within the governing body, confirming rumours of his departure from the Citroën WRC outfit.Matton has been in charge of Citroën’s rally programme since 2011 after he replaced Olivier Quesnel. Pierre Budar will now take up the role of team principal, having previously run PSA’s customer racing […]

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World class entry for Monte Carlo

The 2018 world championship gets underway later this month at the prestigious Rallye Monte-Carlo (25 – 28 January) – and this year’s season opener boasts a suitably star-studded entry. The Monte marks the first competitive appearance for the WRC class of 2018, and the championship debut for a number of exciting new driver and car […]

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Ford commit to M-Sport World Rally Championship challenge

Ford Motor Company have announced a new technical partnership with their long-term motorsport partner M‑Sport for the upcoming season of the FIA World Rally Championship. Building on the success of the 2017 season which saw Sébastien Ogier and M-Sport secure the drivers’ and manufacturers’ championships, the new partnership will see an increase in technical and […]

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“I feel that it’s our time to shine” – Thierry Neuville

Despite missing out on overall glory in the 2017 FIA World Rally Championship, Hyundai Motorsport driver Thierry Neuville is confident they can learn from their mistakes ahead of the start of the new season. “We might not have achieved the championship titles last season, but there was plenty to celebrate.” said Neuville. “We wanted to […]

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M-Sport adds third car for Monte-Carlo specialist

M-Sport will field a third Ford Fiesta for 2011 Rallye Monte-Carlo winner Bryan Bouffier for two rounds of the 2018 World Rally Championship. Bouffier will contest both the season-opener in Monte-Carlo and also April’s Tour de Corse. The 39-year-old has won both events as part of the Intercontinental Rally Challenge and its European Rally Championship […]

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“You either go flat out or you do something else” – Kalle Rovanperä

  The winds of change are blowing in the FIA World Rally Championship, and 17-year-old Kalle Rovanperä is at the forefront of the impending storm! While much is made of young drivers in Formula 1 with the likes of Sebastian Vettel and in more recent years Max Verstappen showing up their elders, Rovanperä is looking […]

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Government set to launch Safari Rally WRC revival drive

The Kenyan government has pulled out all stops and is set to launch an aggressive push for the return of the Safari Rally to the high-profile World Rally Championship calendar.It’s now 15 years since the International Automobile Federation stripped the Kenyan rally of its WRC status and the government is keen on having the annual race […]

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WRC eyes two-day rallies amid calendar expansion

Two-day rallies are an increasing possibility if the WRC’s expansion brings it back to a 16-round calendar. Chile and Japan are among countries interested in 2019 WRC dates, and series promoter Oliver Ciesla wants the calendar to grow from its current 13-round mark to 15 or 16. The WRC had 16 rounds from 2004-07 but […]

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Sebastien Ogier sets his sights on Le Mans 24 Hours after WRC

World Rally Champion Sébastien Ogier says a Le Mans 24 Hours venture is high up on his wishlist for when he retires from rallying. The Frenchman, who won his fifth WRC title this year and first with the M-Sport outfit, has had a taste for circuit racing having previously tested a Red Bull Formula 1 car […]

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Irish rallying in tributes to crew killed in crash

  An investigation has been launched into the deaths of two competitors during a rally in the south of England at the weekend. Shawn Rayner, who appeared regularly on Irish events, and his co-driver Steve Dear, died when their Ford Escort crashed during the Loco 2 Stages, a single venue rally held within the Bramley […]

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Citroen retain Kris Meeke for 2018 campaign

  Dungannon driver Kris Meeke has been retained by Citroen for the 2018 World Rally Championship season. Meeke, 38, will compete in the full WRC campaign, leading Citroen’s challenge after a disappointing 2017. Victories for Meeke in Mexico and Spain highlighted the Citroen C3’s potential and he finished seventh overall. He will be joined for […]

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M-Sport kept the WRC alive – Volkswagen

Volkswagen Motorsport director Sven Smeets says M-Sport’s 2017 title success is payback for keeping the World Rally Championship afloat when most manufacturers deserted it. Malcolm Wilson’s independent M-Sport team took ex-VW driver Sebastien Ogier to the title this year and also won the manufacturers’ crown – for the first time since its successes as the […]

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Manvir rules Africa

Although the Kenya National Rally Championship 2017 didn’t produce a winner at the culmination of the calendar year, Manvir Singh Baryan and Carl ‘Flash’ Tundo were definitely the men to beat if not the star attractions. Baryan, of Multiple Racing Team, became the fifth Kenyan driver after legendary Joginder Singh and David Horsey (1980s), Don […]

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Ogier feels “more recognition” after M-Sport title

Sebastien Ogier says winning the 2017 World Rally Championship title with privateer outfit M-Sport has brought him more recognition than any of the four he scored with Volkswagen Motorsport. Though Ogier underlined that all five of his WRC crowns meant an equal amount to him personally, he said the underdog nature of his 2017 achievement […]

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Toyota youngsters return in 2018

Toyota’s young driver development scheme will continue in 2018, when Japanese rising stars Takamoto Katsuta and Hiroki Arai will line up for at least five world championship appearances. The TOYOTA GAZOO Racing Rally Challenge Program was established in 2015 and is run from Finland in partnership with Tommi Mäkinen Racing. So far, the scheme has […]

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Loeb back in WRC

WRC legend Sébastien Loeb will return to the FIA World Rally Championship in 2018 with Citroën. Loeb, who won nine consecutive world titles between 2004 and 2012, will drive a C3 World Rally Car at three rounds – on Mexico’s gravel (8 – 11 March), on Corsica’s asphalt (5 – 8 April) and at Spain’s […]

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KMSF savours return of Safari Rally to Worlds

The Kenya Motor Sports Federation is happy at the return of the Safari Rally as a World Rally Championship showpiece. Supi Soin, the federation’s chairman, said: “We want to get a WRC candidature event by 2019. The national competition rules (NCRs) are much stronger and clearer with stringent organiser obligations. It has been a difficult […]

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Ostberg contemplating step down to WRC2 in 2018

Mads Ostberg is ready to do whatever it takes to get his WRC career back on track – including stepping down to next year’s WRC2 support series.The former Citroen and M-Sport factory driver only started eight of this year’s 13 rounds as he struggled to make his Onebet World Rally Team financially viable. The Norwegian […]

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The Fulvia Was Lancia’s First Great Rally Car

 Despite exiting the sport in 1992, Lancia has remained the most dominant manufacturer in the history or rally racing. It’s taken home 10 World Rally Championship titles, and it had great success even before the WRC was formed. Cars like the Stratos, 037, Delta S4 and Delta Integrale have all become legends, but Lancia’s rally […]

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On this day in… 1979

  World Rally Championship history was made on December 14, 1979 when Mercedes, a manufacturer not hitherto associated with rallying on any level, let alone the top tier, took its maiden series win – in Africa’s Ivory Coast Rally – with the unlikely five-litre V8 450 SLC. And not only that, the German machines dominated, […]

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Skoda signs 17-year-old for 2018 WRC2 season

 The 17-year-old Kalle Rovanpera will become the youngest factory driver in the World Rally Championship when he suits up for Skoda in WRC2 next year.Skoda will field an extremely youthful line-up with Rovanpera joining 21-year-olds Ole Christian Veiby and Juuso Nordgren. Pontus Tidemand, who won WRC2 this year, stays with Skoda but is likely to […]

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Subaru Rally Team Canada Claims Victory at B.C.’s Big White Winter Rally

 Subaru Rally Team Canada (SRTC) closed out the 2017 Canadian Rally Championship (CRC) season on a high note, claiming victory at the Big White Winter Rally in British Columbia. Led by driver Antoine L’Estage and co-driver Alan Ockwell, SRTC led from start to finish yet again, adding another win to its tally on the season. […]

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Skoda announce surprise drivers for 2018

 After winning all three WRC 2 titles of the 2017 FIA World Rally Championship (WRC), ŠKODA Motorsport will enter next season’s title race with an especially young team. Ole Christian Veiby and Juuso Nordgren, both 21 years old, as well as 17 years old Kalle Rovanperä will drive the factory team’s ŠKODA FABIA R5 alongside […]

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FIA WRC top tier opened up for privateers

Following the final meeting of the World Motor Sports Council for 2017 in Paris yesterday, it has been confirmed that private teams or individuals will be able to enter 2017 specification World Rally Cars on FIA World Rally Championship events without having any ties with manufacturers. This season entries had to be affiliated with M-Sport, Hyundai, […]

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Why the Ford Fiesta Makes the Perfect First Rally Car

If you want to get into rally, you probably think you want a Subaru, and there’s good reason for that. The company has a long rally history with multiple WRC titles, and it cranks out tons of all-wheel drive cars that can be easily turned into competitive machines. But here’s the thing—you actually want a […]

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WRC Privateer rules boost

Private teams can enter new-era World Rally Cars in their own name from the start of next season.Under FIA rules, non-works driver Mads Østberg was forced to enter his 2017-specification Ford Fiesta under the M-Sport World Rally Team banner rather than his own OneBet team name. After a campaign by the Norwegian, the FIA World […]

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M-Sport to Receive Extra Support From Ford

M-Sport Team Principle Malcolm Wilson has revealed that the team will receive more technical support from the US-based Ford Performance in order to help the teams 2018 World Rally Championship defence. Ford Performance oversees the marque’s successful GT programme and their experience will be used to help update and improve the Fiesta WRC in order […]

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Proton Iriz R5 scores first victory in Grizedale Rally

After taking the podium at the Malton Forest Rally last month, the Proton Iriz R5 secured its first competitive victory with the Mellors Elliot Motorsport (MEM) team over the weekend in the Grizedale Stages Rally, in the hands of Ollie Mellors and co-driver Ian Windress. The duo were fastest in four out of the six […]

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New Look FIA Junior WRC Set For 2018

 M-Sport have announced a change in base colour scheme for their fleet of Ford Fiesta R2-T’s to coincide with the revised championship format for 2018. Unveiled at the team’s Polish headquarters in Karkow, the 2018 JWRC season colour scheme features a mix of blue, grey and yellow that aim to represent the partners of the […]

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VW Polo GTI R5 Rally Car Rockets From 0-62 MPH In 4.1 Seconds

Volkswagen has unveiled the all-new Polo GTI R5 following a preview last month. Introduced earlier today in Spain, the Polo GTI R5 is a turn-key rally car that was designed to compete in the R5 class alongside rivals such as the Citroën DS3 R5, Ford Fiesta R5, and Skoda Fabia R5. As part of the […]

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FIA wants to shorten, “standardise” WRC stages

FIA rally director Jarmo Mahonen says the endurance element of the World Rally Championship is over and the future means shorter stages with more regular visits to the service park. Mahonen wants a return to a more formulaic approach to the sport, with lunchtime service splitting two loops of stages and each test ideally no […]

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Tundo, Jackson jointly win 2017 Safari Classic Rally

 Homeboy Carl ‘Flush’ Tundo and Briton Richard Jackson were jointly declared winners of the 2017 East Africa Classic Safari Rally as the grueling competition came to a close on Friday in Mombasa. This is the first time the rally has produced joint winners since its inception 2003. After a prolonged stewards meeting, it was unanimously […]