2013 WRC Rally Monte Carlo
29th December 2012, 0:50 at 12:50 am #132554
I know its 3 weeks away, but the teams have already started to prepare a couple of weeks ago. In Monte Carlo, we will see the VW Polo WRC car racing for the first time, and they have done a couple of tests already (one of which resulted in a collision with a normal car on the closed roads in Mexico http://www.6righttightens.com/jari-matti-latvala-in-accident-with-civilian-while-testing-in-mexico/….).
And while it looked for a while like there might have been a different winner this year, Sebastien Loeb has confirmed that Monte Carlo is on the schedule of the four races he will enter this season (He has won this rally 6 times, and his lowest ever position here in a WRC car is 2nd).
Citroen seem to be the favorites coming into this rally, with 3 very strong drivers (Sebastien Loeb, Mikko Hirvonen and Dani Sordo) all of which have had some great performances in Monte Carlo. It seems that the battle will be between these three team mates for the win next month. Sordo recorded Mini’s highest finish last season in Monte Carlo, with a second place.
After Ford’s decision to pull the plug on factory support of the WRC program, M-Sport has confirmed that Mads Ostberg will be there main driver, with the Russian Evgeny Novikov partnering him for all rounds of the WRC. Both of these drivers began to show their potential last season, however they have been rather inconsistent, particularly Novikov, who has finished as high as second last season (twice), but also saw several retirements and very low finishes. Ostberg earned his first WRC win last year, and after being promoted to the number one spot for Ford, will surely look to score well here this year. This will be his first start in Monte Carlo. Also entering all rounds of the season will be the Qatar World Rally Team, with Juho Hanninen and Thierry Neuville in M-Sport prepared Ford Fiestas.
Still, the strongest fight against the Citroens may come from VW, with two great drivers (Jari-Matti Latvala and Sebastien Ogier), although they have said that they don’t expect to be immediate favorites. Still, Ogier is very quick on tarmac, and he almost recorded the highest ever finishing position last year in Monte Carlo for an S2000 car, before having a high speed accident on the Lamastre–Gilhoc–Alboussière stage.
Also entering are Poland’s Michal Koscuszko in a Mini WRC car, as well as Bryan Bouffier of France in a Citroen DS3 and Julien Maurin and Martin Prokop (France, Czech Republic) in a Ford Fiesta.
While you wait for the for the rally, here is some pre-season testing footage from Monte Carlo.
Ostberg, Novikov, Haninen, Ford Fiesta:
And finally, the 2012 Rally Monte Carlo review:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4P6fG_rHgUk (Pt. 1)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I1m7LRLYi9c (Pt. 2)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pMMcbxa1Vh4 (Pt. 3)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EIp7I-H_ufM (Pt. 4)
Hopefully this will fill your time between now and the first stage in about 3 weeks time.29th December 2012, 2:18 at 2:18 am #221071
Here’s the full entry list:
Thirteen WRC cars (ten of which are eligible to score manufacturers’ points; Martin Prokop, Bryan Bouffier and Julien Maurin are not), eight WRC-2 entries, and three WRC-3 teams. The only real surprise is the Lotos Team WRC entry, which is running a single Mini John Cooper Works for Michał Kościuszko (who is making his WRC-level debut). They’re made up of the remnants of Team Mini Portugal, but I can’t find out anything on whether or not they will contest more than one round.7th January 2013, 22:31 at 10:31 pm #221072
Anyone any ideas what’s going o with coverage this year? I know Red Bull are the new promoters and it’s not like them to miss a marketing opportunity.
Thanks for the summary @polishboy808 much appreciated! Really looking forward to this season with all these changes, just hope it gets some decent coverage, particularly on the WRC radio as that really was poor last year.8th January 2013, 10:06 at 10:06 am #221073
A month ago there was this bit of news: “Sources in the FIA have confirmed the agreement between the sport’s governing body and Red Bull Media House and Sportsman Media has still not been signed.”
Haven’t heard anything since… maybe no news is good news?8th January 2013, 19:21 at 7:21 pm #221074
I hope so! I would have thought Red Bull would be all over it like flies around poo had they signed a deal though…9th January 2013, 0:16 at 12:16 am #221075
What relation does the classic rally have to the main event? I ask because I’m going to go along to the start in Glasgow. It says they’ll drive to Monte Carlo, though I suspect their rally will finish there while the WRC boys get cracking.
edit: Awesome intro @polishboy808 — I haven’t followed rallying in years so it’s good to get some context.9th January 2013, 1:22 at 1:22 am #221076
Slight update on the choice of tires for several competitors. While Micheline is the official tire supplier and a partner of the WRC, several other tires have been run over the years. This year, DMACK, a relatively small British operation, will be supplying tires to three drivers, two of which will be taking part in this years rally Monte Carlo.
In previous years, DMACK has run with Martin Prokop, and he has been the companies main points scorer (including a 4th place finish in last years rally Argentina). Evgeny Novikov also scored points for them in last years Rally de Espana.
This year, DMACK will be running again with Martin Prokop, as well as Michal Kosciuszkio. Another one off appearance will be made by Finn Jari Ketomaa, to help the team in developing their snow tires in the second round of the championship in Sweden. This will be DMACK’s first appearance on tarmac in the WRC, and it will be interesting to see how these tires fair against the mighty Michelines.9th January 2013, 16:26 at 4:26 pm #221077
Red Bull have already signed the deal to become promoter a few months back:
They also signed HBS for the TV production last month.
Regarding who’s showing it on TV, MotorsTV are said to be the only people interested so it will likely continue to be shown there.9th January 2013, 23:03 at 11:03 pm #221078
Red Bull have already signed the deal to become promoter a few months back
Did you read that entire article? David Evans points out that there has been no annoucement of anything being signed, and that the specific wording of the press release is that they will “proceed with an agreement”. This report from December (the one you linked to is dated September) makes it pretty clear that nothing has been signed:
Red Bull Media House and German firm Sportsman Media are in the process of acquiring the global media and promotional rights to the World Rally Championship on a long-term basis […] Sources in the FIA have confirmed the agreement between the sport’s governing body and Red Bull Media House and Sportsman Media has still not been signed.9th January 2013, 23:12 at 11:12 pm #221079
Anyone know if/ where Ott Tanak will be driving this season. I had a quick look online but I couldn’t find what, if any, plans he has for 2013. It’d be a shame if he wasn’t driving, he had been touted as the next big thing over the last few years.10th January 2013, 1:02 at 1:02 am #221080
@ned-flanders – As far as I’m aware, Tanak doesn’t have any current plans. He lost his M-Sport seat following the restructuring of the Ford teams. His co-driver, Kuldar Sikk, will be working with Yuiry Protasov in Monte Carlo, and he’s not on the entry list, so the earliest he could join is in Sweden. There’s a vacant seat at Prodrive that he could fill, but that’s probably his only chance at making regular appearances.
I’m disappointed he doesn’t have any plans as well. I did think he was fast (he’s Markko Martin’s protege), but also quite erratic. It didn’t help that M-Sport kept retiring him last year to take advantage of rules that would allow them to put fresh parts in for the next rally without penalty.11th January 2013, 2:07 at 2:07 am #221081
Qatar M-Sport have just unveiled their new livery. It’s not pretty; it reminds me of the ING Renaults of 2007 and 2008, which had far too many colours and no one shade dominating:
Citroen have also refined their livery, with a much more subtle shade of gold, which makes it look considerably better:
Lotos Team WRC have also released Michal Kosciuszko’s livery, which is keeping in the theme of the Mini liveries with the chequered pattern:
And Martin Prokop has a new paint job as well:12th January 2013, 1:57 at 1:57 am #221082
Bad news for Mikko Hirvonen, who had a violent crash during Monte Carlo testing. Appearently he missed the turn in for a corner in 5th gear and ended up going off, rolling the car three times.12th January 2013, 3:01 at 3:01 am #221083
Ah, it wouldn’t be pre-season testing without Hirvonen crashing heavily. He did the same thing last year, and in 2010.12th January 2013, 10:48 at 10:48 am #221084
There doesn’t seem to be footage of Hirvonen’s crash but here’s some video of him testing:
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