Several racing drivers have tried their hand at the WRC over the years, with varying degrees of success. WRC.com profiles five who have tried.
The 2007 Formula One world champion (pictured) decided that he wanted to go rallying after Ferrari ended his contract a year early at the end of 2009, making a high-profile switch with Red Bull and Citroen. Fifth on the 2010 Rally of Turkey would be his best result, but that doesn’t do justice to the star quality that the ‘Iceman’ brought to the WRC.
A former grand prix driver, the Argentine is still the most successful Formula One driver to have competed in the World Rally Championship, finishing third twice on his home event, in 1980 (when he was still a Williams driver) and in 1985. As well as that he scored 12 grand prix wins, and almost ran for President in his homeland.
Before Kimi Raikkonen, Englishman Derek Warwick was the last active F1 driver to take part on a world championship rally, while driving for Lotus. He was running as high as 12th overall on Rally GB in 1990 in a Subaru Legacy, before slithering into a ditch in Kielder Forest on the penultimate day and retiring.
Sarrazin once joked that he had “the brain of a racing driver and the heart of a rally driver”: clearly a promising combination. In 2004 he won the French Rally Championship in a privateer Subaru, prompting Prodrive to sign him the following year. His best result was fourth - which he achieved in both Spain and Corsica.
The three-time World Touring Car champion has a feel for rallying through his successful Dakar and ice racing campaigns. But it wasn’t until 2010 that he tried Rallye de France, held around his native Alsace in a Citroen Xsara WRC. Mechanical problems delayed him, but he came back for more the following year.