A round-up of the stories that are making the news in the WRC today:
- Entries for next month’s Wales Rally GB, restored to its traditional position as the final round of the WRC, are more than double the total for the 2012 event.
Only 31 cars started last year’s Cardiff-based rally, but the move to Deeside in north Wales and the return of some classic special stages has prompted a surge of interest with 64 crews entered for the 14 - 17 November event. A capacity entry of 100 crews will contest the two national rallies running alongside Wales Rally GB.
Twenty-six nationalities are represented in the line-up. In addition to the WRC regulars, Poland’s Michal Solowow will drive a Ford Fiesta RS WRC for the Qatar M-Sport team.
Britain’s Mark Higgins will drive a Fiesta R5 in WRC 2 and Winter Olympic skeleton gold medalist Amy Williams will contest her first international rally as co-driver for television presenter Tony Jardine.
- Cycling superstar Joaquim ‘Purito’ Rodríguez of the Russian Katusha Team will be a special guest at Rally de Espana.
The Spaniard, who was born in Barcelona, is world number one in the UCI World Tour rankings and will visit Salou on Sunday 27th, the last day of the rally.
A huge fan of motorsports, ‘Purito’ will watch the Terra Alta stage (SS12) and then visit the Service Park after the first loop of stages on Sunday.
- Robert Barrable is hoping his circuit experience in karts and single-seater racing cars will give him an edge in the WRC 2 category at Rally de Espana.
The 26-year old is aiming for a podium this weekend in his Tunnock’s World Rally Team Ford Fiesta R5 and has been honing his asphalt skills by driving a Formula Ford at Kirkistown Circuit in his native Ireland [pictured right].
Barrable said: “For the last two years I’ve been out to Spain to watch the rally. Even though I didn’t get the opportunity to drive through any of the stages, I’ve got a good feeling for the region and for the nature of the roads. I think the fast and flowing asphalt stages in particularly will suit my driving style. The roads are like a race track in places.”
Barrable warming up for Rally de Espana