Ott Tanak’s win at ADAC Rally Deutschland has upset the WRC’s points applecart, throwing the M-Sport driver into potential contention for the coveted WRC Drivers crown.
Only his second career victory, Tanak took charge of the German event, leading a charge that saw team-mate Sebastien Ogier finish third.
This was the last remaining rally on the WRC calendar for M-Sport to win, team principal Malcolm Wilson now having “ticked all the boxes”.
Where does this leave Kennards Hire Rally Australia in terms of a winner?
With only two rallies to go before the season closer, it’s anyone’s guess as to how the championship will play out.
Will the World Rally Champion be crowned on the streets of Coffs Harbour?
My bet is yes! And here are my reasons:
There are four drivers with a mathematical chance of winning. Ogier, Neuville, Tanak and Latvala.
Thierry Neuville now sits 17 points behind Sebastien Ogier in the title race. (Photo: Holmes)
Latvala (TOYOTA) is an outside chance, although he is a good performer in Australia. He will have to win the two next events for him to have any chance. I would not bet the next house payment on it!
Tanak (M-SPORT) is on form and is a known performer on tarmac and the next rally is the only mixed surface event on the calendar. He can be expected to fight for the lead. His grade point average finish is 3.6
The cars at the next event, Rally Catalunya, have to convert from gravel spec to tarmac spec in a longer than usual evening service break after the first full day. Adaptability will be the key.
Ogier won the Catalunya rally in 2016, showing his mastery of mixed surface events. His average finishing position is 2.4.
Neuville, has the best chance of taking the crown off Ogier. He is only one win behind him. Can he take the win? Maybe! Is the car good enough? Yes, it is. His average is 8.9…
Marring any disasters at the next two rallies, the outcome of the World Rally Championship is far from decided and that will push these drivers to the limit and beyond on the tricky Coffs Harbour roads.
Experts like Loeb have been caught out by road surface changes in the past, and with Kennards Hire Rally Australia contested in November, an afternoon storm is never out of the question, quickly changing conditions.
The outcome of the 2017 championship will more than likely be decided at Kennards Hire Rally Australia, and that will deliver that extra bit of rally excitement that you won’t want to miss.
The 2017 teams are competing in the most spectacular form of motorsport there is. 13 events from around the world and in November it’s our turn to see the most spectacular motorsport up close and as real as it gets.
Where will you be in November when all this action is unfolding? The WRC stars drive at a pace that must be seen to be believed. Seasoned rally competitors returned recently from spectating at Rally Finland and they are still raving on about the action.
Kennards Hire Rally Australia has great viewing every day of the event, with a fabulous two-for-one offer available for spectators. Get in quick as this offer will end soon, and it’s your best chance to save money to see the best motorsport competition in Australia this year.
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