Our guide to the WRC 2 category of this week's rally
- Esapekka Lappi starts as favourite in the WRC 2 category as the Finn aims to make up for lost ground on his home round. The Skoda Fabia S2000 driver retired from the opening counter in Monte Carlo, but scored maximum points in Portugal and lies 68 points behind series leader Abdulaziz Al-Kuwari.
- The Qatari does not compete here and the man who stands to benefit most is Robert Kubica [pictured]. The Pole is fourth in the standings, having won the previous two rounds in Greece and Italy, and another strong performance here in a Citroen DS3 RRC could see the ex-Formula 1 driver move even closer to the top.
- In action for the first time in the WRC is the new Ford Fiesta R5, the first of the R5 category cars to appear at the top level. Elfyn Evans and Robert Barrable, second in Portugal on his only outing so far, are fancied to go well but keep an eye out also for Autotek-entered duo Eyvind Brynildsen, from Norway, and Jari Ketomaa, who will be a threat on home ground.
- Second-placed Nicolas Fuchs is also absent here, but Yazeed Al Rajhi returns in a Fiesta RRC for the first time since breaking vertebrae in a crash during the Ha'il International Cross-Country Rally in Saudi Arabia in March.