M-Sport, the manufacturer most involved in the issue, has been closely following the preparation work at the FIA for the proposed new world championship Privateer’s Cup.   

Currently it is all at the consultation period with competitors and organisers, trying to make it as simple as possible to compete in.  

Richard Millener at M-Sport explained: “There needs to be some recognition from the events that the drivers on each rally are competing for that cup.  

“It is important that competitors can be seen to be involved and have something to show their sponsors, especially if they win a category on a WRC event.  

“We’re going down the route of finalising those details and hopefully that will all be finished in the next month or so.  

“A proposed calendar for a Privateers Cup is one discussion point. Should the number of qualifying events be limited, and should the entry on certain events be mandatory?  We want to have the cars competing on the same rallies, but also do not want to detract from a local entering a rally at any point during the season.”
The basic intention is to offer a championship for drivers who are not allowed to compete in the WRC in 2017 World Rally Cars and are only able to compete in 2016 or earlier World Rally Cars.  

“Another aspect is of these drivers is that the guys that we know would want to compete are fully aware that they’re not going to win a rally outright, because they don’t have the time to spend in the cars which the professional drivers do,” Millener added.  

“However, they already contribute a very good, media and financial side to the championship which is important for the organisers and everybody involved – teams and FIA.  

“Guys like Prokop, Yazeed and Gorban, for example, are all vitally important to the championship because they spend their time and their budgets in the world championship, which is where we want the top of the sport to be.  

“For me the age of the cars they will use doesn’t really come into it, the main thing is making sure there’s something there for the people who we need competing to be there.”

- Martin Holmes  

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