Sordo handed top
slot over Neuville
Hyundai Motorsport has chosen Dani Sordo as its lead driver ahead of Thierry Neuville for the 2016 WRC season.
The FIA issued an entry list containing seven manufacturers and teams, with the Korean squad naming Spaniard Sordo as its nominated driver. Nominated manufacturer drivers must contest a minimum of 10 rounds in the 14-event calendar.
Hyundai, which will debut its new-generation i20 World Rally Car at the season-opening Rallye Monte-Carlo (21 - 24 January), confirmed last month it would operate a rotation policy across its lead team with Sordo, Neuville and Hayden Paddon sharing the two seats.
Team principal Michel Nandan said at the time all three drivers would contest all 14 rounds and the strategy would allow the squad to match them to their specific strengths from event to event.
Volkswagen Motorsport has nominated reigning world champion Sébastien Ogier while M-Sport World Rally Team, whose registration ends the uncertainty over whether it would enter for 2016, has chosen the returning Mads Østberg.
Four other entries have been received from WRC Teams. They will score points in the manufacturers’ championship but do not have to have name a nominated driver.
They are DMACK World Rally Team (Ott Tänak), Volkswagen Motorsport II (Andreas Mikkelsen), Yazeed Racing (Yazeed Al Rajhi) and Hyundai Motorsport N, which will be represented at each rally by whichever of the three drivers is not in the lead squad.
Al Rajhi steps up from WRC 2 and is expected to contest up to seven rounds in a Ford Fiesta RS.
Abu Dhabi World Rally Team, led by Kris Meeke, is expected to contest much of the season with Citroën’s DS 3 cars although it has not entered the championship. Lorenzo Bertelli is also expected to contest 13 rounds but his FWRT squad has also not registered.
Hyundai opts for mix-and-match
Neuville, Sordo and Paddon to share i20 drives
Tänak to drive for new DMACK team in 2016
Estonian will tackle 14 rounds with the DMACK World Rally Team