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Thierry Neuville

Driver profile

Career Summary

Info

Nationality:  BEL
Date of Birth: 16.06.1988
Age: 30
First Rally: 2009, Spain
Rally Wins: 4
Website: www.thierryneuville.com

Season 2018

Classification: WRC
Car No: 5
Car: Hyundai i20 WRC
Team: Hyundai Shell Mobis World Rally Team
Co-driver: Nicolas Gilsoul

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Here’s what makes him special:

• Cool as a cucumber, Neuville has a winning mix of youth, raw speed and natural talent

• Now in his fifth season with Hyundai, Neuville has finished runner-up in the drivers’ standings on three occasions.

• Made headlines around the world twice in 2014, firstly for using beer to get his car to the podium in Mexico, then for winning in Germany three days after barrel rolling his car through a Mosel vineyard

• He’s a snappy dresser, known for his colourful taste in watches and glasses

The story so far

Neuville has established himself as one of the WRC's fastest drivers and it’s only a question of time before he scoops his first world title.

Having cut his teeth on events in his homeland of Belgium as a teenager, he kicked off his first international rallying campaign in 2010 when he contested the FIA Junior World Rally Championship. He scored one win and a podium and also notched up some useful results in the Intercontinental Rally Challenge in S2000 machinery.

In 2011, Neuville claimed IRC victories in Corsica and Sanremo and this prompted Citroën’s WRC squad to offer him a full season in its Junior World Rally Team in 2012. After finishing seventh in the 2012 championship, he was quickly snapped up by the Qatar M-Sport World Rally Team for a full assault on the 2013 series.

Driving a Ford Fiesta RS WRC, Neuville claimed four consecutive runner-up finishes and three third places to clinch second in the drivers’ championship.

This kind of form ensured Neuville emerged as the hottest property on the transfer market and he signed a multi-year agreement to be the lead driver at Hyundai’s new WRC team in 2014.

Neuville wrung the most out of the ever-improving i20 WRC in its debut season and finished on the podium three times. His first podium came in Mexico, thanks in part to a bottle of Corona lager that he used to re-fill a broken radiator. His finest hour however came in Germany, where he took his maiden WRC rally win, three days after almost destroying his car at the pre-event shakedown.

A strong start to 2015 netted second place in Sweden. But the following 11 rounds brought just one more top three finish in Italy. Delays to the development of Hyundai's new car created frustrations and he struggled for confidence in the second half of the season.

Neuville was revitalised in 2016. Victory in Italy kick-started his campaign and he never finished outside the top four in the final eight rallies, ending the year with a run of five podiums.

The 2017 season was arguably his best to date as he pushed Sébastien Ogier all the way in the race for the drivers’ crown. A failure to score in Germany and Spain ultimately proved his undoing, but four wins was his best return in a WRC season.

Season Classification Starts 1. 2. 3. Car Points Standing
2017 WRC 13 4 2 2 Hyundai i20 WRC 208 2.
2016 WRC 13 1 1 5 Hyundai i20 WRC 160 2.
2015 WRC 13 0 1 1 Hyundai i20 WRC 90 6.
2014 WRC 13 1 0 2 Hyundai i20 WRC 105 6.
2013 WRC 13 0 4 3 Ford Fiesta RS WRC 176 2.
2012 WRC 12 0 0 0 Citroen DS3 WRC 53 7.
2010 JWRC 5 0 0 0 40 7.

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