The 20-year-old Bolivian, who finished runner-up to Jari Huttunen in WRC3 last season, and co-driver Marcelo Der Ohannesian begin their campaign at the season-opening Rallye Monte-Carlo (21 - 24 January).
Bulacia flies to Europe today (Saturday) and will test his Skoda Fabia Rally2 evo for two days next week close to the event’s Gap base.
After Monte-Carlo, he tackles the next three WRC rounds in Croatia, Portugal and Italy. The second half of the season features the fast gravel roads of Estonia and Finland, before finishing on his home continent in Chile.
Bulacia believes having three-time word rally winner Mikkelsen alongside him in the Toksport squad will help with his career development.
“Having a team-mate like Andreas Mikkelsen, who has been a driver for manufacturer teams like Volkswagen, Citroën, Hyundai and Škoda is a huge benefit. His experience will surely be for the good of all and I hope to learn the most from him,” he said,
Bulacia will also draw on the experience of 2017 FIA Junior WRC champion Nil Solans in Monte-Carlo. The Spaniard will pilot his safety car, driving the special stages ahead of the competitors to provide the latest snow and ice information and advise on tyre choice.
Since 2019 Bulacia has been based in Valencia in Spain, where he is studying engineering, and admits being away from home across the Atlantic can be tough.
“Sometimes home, family and friends are missed, but that’s what it takes and from the beginning we prefer to be close to the team, the test sites and the opportunities,” he explained.
“We are very proud to be part of the 2020 WRC2 champion team, and have the full support of Škoda. It is logical that the pressure increases a bit, the team will look for good results and you have to be up to the task.
“But we believe that with the work we have been doing, and absorbing all the experience of the team in relation to the Fabia and the events that we do not know about, we will be able to meet the expectations that they have of us.”
A raft of upgrades have been introduced to the Fabia for 2021. More power, improved shock absorbers and new gear ratios which take the top speed above 200kph form part of the improvements along with reliability upgrades including a stronger rear axle subframe and a special cooling device for the rear brakes on gravel.