The new Korean outfit unveiled their 2014 and full driver lineup. Hellix (Shell performance oil) will ablaze on the size. With “N”, Hyundai’s new performance division. They boasted a healthy lineup of up and coming, Thierry Nueville and established talents of Dani Sordo, Chris Atkinson and Juha Hanninen. I’d love to see them challenge VW for podiums early on in the season but I know better. With the addition of Hyundai this year and Toyota next year, I hope there are great things ahead for the WRC.
Moreover, Citroen has decided to give Kris Meeke a shot. A LOOOONNNG time coming for him. They’ve also signed Mads Ostberg. I’d give it a few days before they sign Robert Kubica and Mikko Hirvonnen.
Toyota’s TMG (Their German based racing division, also building the LMP1 car) has confirmed to be constructing a Yaris based WRC spec car for the 2014 season. It will be used as an evaluating platform for a full factory effort in the short future. They seem relatively certain of future rallying programs. VW and Hyundai are full fledged factory WRC programs. M-Sport is a privately funded team running Ford Fiestas. Citroen will be scaling back their WRC commitment with their WTCC endeavor taking first stage. The addition of Toyota is a dose of good news the FIA will take. They need the car count.
Vettel wasn’t the only recent champion. Sebastien Ogier picked up his first WRC title. Everyone knew he had the talent. The surprise came in the form of the winning manufacturer. Not often does any team in any series win outright in their first full season. Volkswagen did just that. The field is thinned out, yes, but I won’t take away any credit. Citroen and Ford should have had enough engineering and resources from a decade plus of rallying to hold of VW. Icing on the cake for Ogier, saw him take the fight to Loeb and beat him during his small 4 rally campaign. 2 wins and two 2nds for Ogier while Loeb had 2 wins a 2nd and a retirement. Ogier also beat Loeb at the Monaco Porsche Supercup race, which was won by Sean Edwards. I can’t see anyone catching up to Ogier next year. Expect a VW whitewash.
After a quick pitstop at Cars and Coffee I made my way over to the 2013 Subaru Hypermeet. I felt like there was a tad more variety this year compared to previous years. HREs would not have been seen before. Neither would that Forester trailer combo.
This. Pretty much the car I lusted after in high school Blue GC, with rally style (Compomotive, Impuls etc) wheels.
Satin red Plastidipped GD. Well done.
My old wheels!! The owner is still happy with them. Even sporting the same 2+ year old paint job. Industrial rust paint FTW.
Tremcladed by the owner on his driveway. Impressize. My tremcladed bumper on the other hand looks like ass.
Life after the WRC seems pretty good for Sebastien Loeb. A rumoured WTCC program with Citroen, select rounds of the Porsche Super Cup now this. A Pikes Peak attack. Peageot, looking back to its Climb Dance days, will compete at Pikes Peak with their 208 T16. Its more or less a rehashed 908. The running gear, brakes, and some aero (roof scoop and massive rear wing) is carried over directly from their LMP1 car. With 875hp, a curbweight of 875 kgs, this AWD hatch is a beast. Its top speed is only 150mph…..which is reach in 7 seconds -_-.
So are we handing the title to Ogier already? Jebus. From one dominating Frenchman to another. He leads heading into Day 2. Fun Fact: This is Ken Block’s only rally of the year. He’s doing quite well. For a guy that picked up rallying as a hobby late in his 30′s, to be even on the same page as a WRC regular is amazing.