Toyota Gazoo Racing completed its preparations for the Marmaris-based WRC round at the end of last month, ahead of the championship’s post-lockdown restart event at Rally Estonia. M-Sport Ford has elected to skip a test for Turkey.
Sébastien Loeb was first to try the i20 World Rally Car on Monday. He was followed by Thierry Neuville and Ott Tänak as Hyundai bids to make further inroads into Toyota’s five point manufacturers’ championship lead.
All three drivers completed their pre-event set-up work in a car which has evolved considerably since its last rough rally outing in Mexico in March.
Team principal Andrea Adamo said: “We have made a good set-up test and we are ready for Turkey. We had a good win last time in Estonia, but we cannot take anything for granted in Turkey – this is a rally which can, for sure, have a sting in the tail.”
Video: Rally Turkey magazine
Estonia winner Ott Tänak added that he was pleased with the chassis developments which had come to the Hyundai since March.
“The car felt good in the test,” he said, “but I haven’t driven it in Turkey, so I don’t know what I can expect. Is it fast enough to win? We will find out soon but we won’t be the only ones trying to win. We don’t know where are the other guys.”
While the i20 has shown strong pace on rough rallies since the arrival of the latest generation of cars in 2017, success in Marmaris has so far eluded Hyundai. A brace of third places for Hayden Paddon in 2018 and Andreas Mikkelsen last season are the best results.
• Full coverage from Rally Turkey will be available on WRC+ All Live here, including every stage broadcast as it happens as well as key interviews, features and expert analysis from the service park.