Japanese drivers Takamoto Katsuta [above] and Hiroki Arai will contest five rounds of this year's WRC 2 championship as part of their ongoing development programme with Toyota.
The 23-year-olds were selected for Toyota Gazoo Racing's Rally Challenge Program in 2015. They have spent the last two years training in Finland and competing in various European rallies under the watchful eye of four-time world champion Tommi Mäkinen.
In 2016 the pair tackled eight rallies, including Neste Rally Finland where they made their WRC debuts at the wheel of Ford Fiesta R5 cars.
An expanded 14-round campaign is planned for 2017 that again includes the Finnish classic, plus other WRC rounds in Sweden, Portugal, Italy and mixed surface event in Spain. These, and four other rallies, will be contested with Ford Fiesta R5s, while the rest with be with R2-spec cars.
Arai [below] will continue to be co-driven by the vastly experienced Glenn Macneall, while Katsuta begins a new partnership with Marko Salminen after his former co-driver Daniel Barritt rejoined M-Sport driver Elfyn Evans.