WRC Chile's new round of the WRC attracts 63-car entry
COPEC RALLY CHILE, May 9-12, 2019
2019 FIA World Rally Championship, round 6
For immediate release
Monday, May 6th, 2019
CHILE’S NEW ROUND OF THE WRC ATTRACTS IMPRESSIVE 63-CAR ENTRY
· Teams arrive in Concepción and prepare to start stage reconnaissance on Tuesday
CONCEPCIÓN (CHILE): Sixty-three cars and competitors from 18 nations grace the entry list for Copec Rally Chile, the exciting new sixth round of the FIA World Rally Championship, which takes centre stage over 16 gravel special stages this week (May 9-12).
Eleven P1 drivers top the entry in World Rally Cars with the championship-leading Hyundai Shell Mobis World Rally Team sending three i20 WRCs for Drivers’ Championship pace-setter Thierry Neuville, Andreas Mikkelsen and nine-time World Champion Sébastien Loeb.
Ott Tänäk, Jari-Matti Latvala and Kris Meeke represent the Toyota Gazoo Racing World Rally Team and Welshman Elfyn Evans and Teemu Suninen feature in the M-Sport Ford World Rally Team line-up with a pair of Fiesta WRCs. Six-time World Champion Sébastien Ogier and Finnish team-mate Esapekka Lappi represent the Citroën Total World Rally Team.
Privateer Lorenzo Bertelli rounds off the World Rally Car field in an M-Sport Ford Fiesta.
Four drivers grace the WRC 2 Pro list, a new sub-section of the popular feeder series for professional drivers in WRC 2 cars. Poland’s Lukasz Pieniazek currently leads the series by four points, but has not made the trip to Chile.
His absence has opened the door for nearest rival Gus Greensmith to take control in his Ford Fiesta R5, but the Englishman faces competition from Finland’s Kalle Rovanperä, the experienced Norwegian Mads Østberg and talented young Bolivian driver Marco Bulacia.
Copec Rally Chile has attracted an impressive 19 entries in WRC 2 for non-professional drivers in a category that is led by Mexican Benito Guerra after the recent Rally of Argentina. Guerra faces a testing challenge from Japan’s Takamoto Katsuta and Poland’s Kajetan Kajetanowicz in a category that is dominated by South American drivers.
These include the Chilean Heller brothers, Alberto and Pedro, in a pair of Ford Fiesta R5s, Brazilian Paulo Nobre, a host of other Chilean and Argentinean crews and the Peruvian driver Eduardo Castro.
The remainder of the entry is made up of drivers from Chile, Argentina, Peru, Spain and Uruguay tackling the event is a variety of cars entered in the RC3 and RC4 categories. Meanwhile, Chilean WRC 2 driver Felipe Rossi suffered a setback to his pre-rally preparations after a testing accident with his Ford Fiesta R5 on Monday morning.
Tomorrow, crews begin the first of two full days of reconnaissance of brand new special stages they will face over three challenging days this weekend. Recce runs from 07.20hrs through to 18.00hrs, with administration checks taking place in Rally HQ at the Casino Marina del Sol and the Media Centre officially opening at the Puerto Marina Convention Centre.
For further media information:
Copec Rally Chile 2019, Media Centre, Puerto Marina Convention Centre, Concepción, Chile, Alvaro Lavin (firstname.lastname@example.org), Rodrigo Castillo (email@example.com), Lluisa Torres (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Neil Perkins (email@example.com).