• Analysis: Is WRC 'boom and bust' over?

    Monday, 21 March 2016

    With Volkswagen committed for the long term and Toyota and Citroen coming back, the World Rally Championship is regaining manufacturer momentum. But is it sustainable this time? Just over a decade ago, the bubble burst. I remember the realization of what was coming. It was Argentina 2005 when the pieces fell into place, the stories stacked up. Three years earlier, the WRC had been flying high wit...

  • FIA makes rally safety breakthrough

    Thursday, 17 March 2016

    FIA rally safety test The FIA Institute has made a potentially life-saving breakthrough in efforts to avoid the kind of rally crash that killed British co-driver Gareth Roberts and left Robert Kubica seriously injured. A device fitted around the open end of a guardrail barrier was tested in Germany recently and successfully avoided cockpit intrusion â a feature of the accidents involving both Rob...

  • WRC: No repeat for 50-mile Mexico stage

    Friday, 11 March 2016

    The future of long-distance stages in the World Rally Championship looks bleak after Rally Mexico's record-breaking 50-mile test failed to inspire the series promoter. Last Sunday's 50-mile Guanajuato stage was the longest on a sprint-style WRC event (excluding African marathons such as the Ivory Coast or Safari) since the 1986 Tour of Corsica. But that record will stand for some time as Rally Me...

  • WRC: Latvala thinks title bid realistic

    Thursday, 10 March 2016

    Jari-Matti Latvala believes he can still beat Sebastien Ogier to the 2016 World Rally Championship after his Rally Mexico victory. Latvala had not scored this season prior to last weekend's Leon-based event, while Ogier was both unbeaten and had taken maximum powerstage scores on the opening rallies in Monte Carlo and Sweden. Although Latvala has only managed to trim the gap to Ogier from 56 poin...

  • WRC: VW program safe until 2019

    Wednesday, 09 March 2016

    Jari-Matti Latvala, VW, WRC Mexico 2016 Volkswagen's future in the World Rally Championship has been reconfirmed until the end of 2019 despite recent upheaval at the company. The Volkswagen Group board signed off on the German firm's long-term agreement to stay in the WRC last year, but the company's recent emissions scandal â and subsequent departure of key board members â undermined that commit...

  • WRC: Hyundai criticizes Neuville for crash

    Monday, 07 March 2016

    Hyundai Hyundai team manager Alain Penasse has criticized Thierry Neuville for an "unnecessary" accident on Rally Mexico, but it believes he can recover by winning the next World Rally Championship round in Argentina. One of the pre-event favorites in Mexico, Neuville lost his chance of victory when he sustained a broken suspension arm on the first gravel stage of the event. He rejoined under Ral...

  • WRC: Penalty costs Sordo Mexico podium

    Sunday, 06 March 2016

    Dani Sordo has lost his Rally Mexico podium after World Rally Championship stewards ruled Hyundai had exceeded its tire limit for the event. The Spaniard used 29 tyres during the rally, one more than the rules permitted. He was given a two-minute penalty on Sunday evening, but with the large gaps that had opened up on the attritional rally it only dropped him one place to fourth. Mads Ostberg the...

  • WRC: Latvala claims dominant Mexico win

    Sunday, 06 March 2016

    Jari-Matti Latvala cruised to a first Rally Mexico victory ahead of Volkswagen World Rally Championship team-mate Sebastien Ogier and Hyundai's Dani Sordo. Assuming the lead with a blistering run on Friday's first stage, El Chocolate, Latvala crushed his rivals on the remainder of that day's stages and never relinquished his spot at the top of the classification. By Sunday morning, Latvala had ex...

  • WRC: Ogier flies but Latvala's lead safe

    Sunday, 06 March 2016

    Jari-Matti Latvala is one stage away from Rally Mexico victory after successfully negotiating the 50-mile Guanajuato test. Having set the pace on the first six of Saturday's nine stages, Latvala was unable to carry that same form into Sunday's opener but came through the stage safely and will carry a lead of a 1m10s into the Agua Zarca powerstage. He now needs only to negotiate the 10-mile stage ...

  • WRC: Ample lead for Latvala after leg two

    Saturday, 05 March 2016

    Jari-Matti Latvala will carry a 1m35.7s advantage over Volkswagen team-mate Sebastien Ogier into Sunday's Rally Mexico finale after a calm run through the trio of spectator stages that closed Saturday. Latvala has taken maximum benefit from his World Rally champion stablemate having to run first on the road through the opening days. Starting further back by virtue of failing to score a single poi...

  • WRC: Latvala marches on, attrition behind

    Saturday, 05 March 2016

    Jari-Matti Latvala carries a minute and a half lead over Volkswagen teammate Sebastien Ogier into Rally Mexico's Saturday evening superspecials, as Andreas Mikkelsen retired from fourth place. Latvala, who is yet to score a point this season, is bidding to become the first man to beat Ogier in 2016, the Frenchman having scored the maximum 56 points on offer so far this year. Carrying a 76-second ...

  • WRC: Latvala storms clear of Ogier

    Saturday, 05 March 2016

    Jari-Matti Latvala pulled clear of Volkswagen team-mate Sebastien Ogier on Saturday's Rally Mexico morning loop after a commanding performance in his Polo R WRC. As he had done a day earlier, Latvala made use of his place further down the running order to stretch his advantage through the day's two longest stages, Ibarrilla and Otates. The Finn now holds a lead of 1m16.3s over Ogier, having set t...

  • WRC: Latvala takes Rally Mexico lead

    Friday, 04 March 2016

    Jari-Matti Latvala leads Rally Mexico after Friday's morning loop, ahead of Volkswagen WRC teammate Sebastien Ogier. Championship leader Ogier had led after Thursday evening's opening three stages but stood to lose ground on El Chocolate, the day's longest test, as the first man to tackle the 34-mile stage. Ogier did well to record the third-fastest time on SS4 after picking four soft tyres and o...

  • WRC: Tire gamble key to Ogier's hopes

    Friday, 04 March 2016

    Sebastien Ogier is ready to gamble on tire choice in an effort to take what would be the toughest win of his World Rally Championship career in Mexico. The WRC leader will run first on the road for the first two full days of competition in Leon, sweeping the loose gravel clean for 188 miles. Although unbeaten in Mexico since 2013 â including a surprise win from first on the road last year â most ...

  • WRC: FIA takes hard line on Argentina safety

    Wednesday, 02 March 2016

    World Rally Championship safety delegate Michele Mouton had a meeting in Argentina last week in an effort to safeguard the future of the country's WRC round, which has been called into question on safety grounds. This season Rally Argentina, like Rally Poland, is running under a yellow card after a warning was handed down by the FIA last season, following a report from the event stewards. Both ra...

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