WRC - 2017 driver rumour mill
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  1. #1
    1000+ Posts FIVEDOOR's Avatar
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    Default WRC - 2017 driver rumour mill

    IT appears that Ogier has Eliminated Toyota from his list of candidate cars for next year. Ogier has stated he has two options for next year, learned guesses are Ford and Citroen.

    But wait, there's more. Nasser Al-Attiyah is rumoured to be trying to establish a two car WRC team with the new VW's, with Ogier as one of the drivers. Al-Attiyah is from Qatar and Qatar owns 17% of VW, which can't hurt with the negotiations.

    Latvala is believed to be close to signing with Toyota, as soon as next week.

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    The other interesting bit of news is that Marcus Gronholm (who has been doing test driving for VW on the new WRC car) was testing the new VW in Sweden for snow testing as late as week commencing 28/11/2016, which is well after the VW announcement that they are pulling out of WRC for next year. I think it adds credibility to the rumours that VW are likely to race in private hands next year.
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  2. #2
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    Malcolm Wilson has announced that M-Sport have signed Ogier to drive Ford for next year. The second M-Sport driver will be Ott Tanak. Ogier is expected to be testing the new Ford this week in Sweden. M-Sports last WRC round win was Wales in 2012 by Latvala.

    Makinen is expected to make the official announcement at an function today in Helsinki ( they are around -8 hours behind) in relation to Toyota drivers, but the choice is widely tipped to be Latvala.
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  3. #3
    1000+ Posts FIVEDOOR's Avatar
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    The official Toyota announcement has been made. Their drivers are:-

    Jari-Matti Latvala
    Juho Hanninen
    Esapekka Lappi

    No great surprises there, three Finns driving for Tommi Makinen led team.

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  4. #4
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    pretty cosy!

  5. #5
    1000+ Posts FIVEDOOR's Avatar
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    Makinen will stand or fall on the decisions he has made. He has been pretty successful at many things he has had a go at.

    I gather from Ogier's choice that he thinks the Ford is a better car.
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    FD, M Sport is just a private team which happens to run Fords, right?

  7. #7
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    It is at the moment, but Malcolm Wilson is hoping to get full factory backing with the signing of Ogier, leading to potentially more lucrative sponsorship deals.
    Last edited by FIVEDOOR; 14th December 2016 at 07:12 PM.
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  8. #8
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    thanks.
    if ever there was a good moment to offer full factory support, i reckon this is it!

  9. #9
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    Andreas Mikkelsen, who won the last WRC round in Australia for VW, is still without a WRC drive for next year
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  10. #10
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    M-Sport fords in war paint for 2017.

    Ogiers car

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    Tanak's car

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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by alexander View Post
    thanks.
    if ever there was a good moment to offer full factory support, i reckon this is it!
    imagine how he feels!
    you could forgive him if he is a little bewildered and thinking 'WTF just happened there!?'.

  12. #12
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    Interesting to note that Ogier's car carries Red Bull signage and Tanak's car does not. I wonder how that influences the cars they drive and the support team they have? Perhaps it's there just to pay Ogier's salary??
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  13. #13
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    Teemu Sunninen (22) will be contesting WRC2 in M-Sports Ford Fiesta. Last year he was second in the WRC2 championship. He is another young Finn.

    PS - The agreement includes limited number of WRC drives in Poland/Finland and possibly Sardinia
    Last edited by FIVEDOOR; 12th January 2017 at 12:27 AM. Reason: Add stuff
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