2017 WRC: who’s driving where?
- 6th September 2016, 11:16pm
Around a dozen of the current top level drivers have been actively working on the development of the 2017 specification World Rally Cars.
This is in addition to a number of experienced drivers who have been invited to give teams their personal opinions, and other drivers who are engaged as permanent test drivers for the teams.
At all the teams there is a veil of secrecy over the work of the test teams, with drivers banned from giving meaningful information to the media.
There is little knowledge as to what extent the cars they have tested represent the final technical specification that will be homologated, and the anticipated degree of increase of performance can be expected next year.
It is far from clear exactly who will be allowed, and who the FIA will be forbid from rallying 2017 version cars. It is clear, however, that top drivers who have been engaged in serious test work are those who are expected to continue with the team after the end of the year.
This throws a spotlight on which current team drivers have NOT been allowed to drive the new version cars. Two names are prominent: Neuville has not driven the new Hyundai, or Ostberg the next version Ford.
2017 car drivers so far:
Citroen - Meeke, Breen and Lefebvre;
Hyundai - Abbring, Paddon and Sordo;
M-Sport - Camilli, Tanak, also Prokop, Malcolm and, mostly, Matthew Wilson;
Toyota - Hanninen and Nikara (also Hirvonen and Lappi, with Makinen);
VW - Ogier, Latvala and Mikkelsen, with Gronholm and mainly Depping.
- Martin Holmes
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