31 Dec 07
Ford has confirmed its future in the World Rally Championship beyond its contract with car builder M-Sport, which comes to an end in 2008.
Ian Slater, Ford of Europe’s vice president, Communications and Public Affairs, said: “We will be working on the new contract in the coming months and the WRC will remain at the forefront of Ford’s motorsport programme. We are all very excited by the new season. We have some driver changes, with Mikko [Hirvonen] leading the team, but look at what he did in Wales, when he won after leading from start to finish. And to back him up, we have Jari-Matti Latvala - who also had an exceptional run in Wales. It’s a great line-up.
“Last year was a great season for us. We continued the incredible run of point-scoring WRC finishes, which now stretches back to 2002; Ford has scored points for the last 92 rallies - that shows our consistency and reliability. That was further shown by the fact that the Ford team did not have one mechanical retirement in 5,600km of flat-out competition.”
Slater also confirmed Ford’s decision to build a Ford Focus RS road car. Further details of the genuine rally-bred road car since the Escort Cosworth more than decade ago will be available later in the year.