The new 2023 WRC season is full of surprises for rally fans and covers thirteen exciting rounds all over the world. The start has been set for January in Monaco, and the finish for mid-November in Japan. After the WRC calendar 2023 has been completed, it’s time to take a look at the 2023 WRC drivers and teams. Moreover, significant changes are already underway. And today the world’s top rally drivers are ready to take a call,completing the WRC driver line-up 2023.
Rally car – Hyundai i20N Coupe.
After annoying defeat, Hyundai has set for the victories in the WRC 2023 season. So, the team hired new team principal as well as set up for the partly new driver line up. Ex F1 Renault team principal Cyril Abiteboul joined to head the team, while younger and talented Oliver Solberg left Hyundai Motorsport as well as Ott Tanak also switched to another team. What a shot comparing with Hyundai WRC driver line-up 2022
What about the officially confirmed Hyundai Motorsport drivers for the 2023 WRC season? Dani Sordo (co-driver Candido Carrera), Craig Breen (co-driver James Fulton) and Thierry Neuville (co-driver Martijn Wydaeghe) are included in the deal. Dani Sordo and Craig Breen are participating as part-time drivers. While Esapekka Lappi and his co-driver Janne Ferm complete the Hyundai Motorsport driver line-up for 2023 as full time crew. Such a chance is significant for Lappi.
Co-drivers’ switching story
The crews and co-drivers from Toyota, M-Sport Ford, and Hyundai are linked by a remarkable story. Impossible not to note. And of course it’s about Sébastien Ogier and his co-driver Vincent Landais.
Landais has worked with Pierre-Louis Loubet, who is a current M-Sport Ford rally driver. But, before the final round – Rally Japan, eight-time WRC champion Ogier decided to switch to another co-driver. Just keep in mind that the French rally champion had worked with Julien Ingrassia for more than thirteen years! He hired Benjamin Veillas in advance of the 2022 season. The official reason is that Sébastien Ogier joined Toyota as a part-time driver and that means a lot.
Regardless, Villas retired, while Vincent Landais joined Ogier. It seems that a story has ended at this point, but not at all. If Landais found the right place and the right language with such an experienced rally driver, what about Pierre-Louis Loubet?
Well, Loubet confirms campaign with M-Sport Ford, but with whom? Yep, with Thierry Neuville’s former co-driver Nicholas Gilsoul. Honestly, when these both announced about their parting already right before the start of Rally Monte Carlo 2021, we thought it’s very unlikely to see Nicholas so soon in WRC, but we just had keept it in the mind.
Thus, the hopes and expectations were met, and it was indeed very soon!
Toyota Gazoo Racing drivers.
Rally car – GR Yaris
The Japanese team keeps the most professional line-up of drivers for 2023. Let’s start with the rally stars! The youngest ever WRC champion Kalle Rovanperä will continue to score new victories with his co-driver Jonne Valtonen.
Sébastien Ogier and Vincent Landais joined the team as part-time crew. Elfyn Evans (co-driver Scott Martin) and Takamoto Katsuta (co-driver Aaron Johnston) compile the WRC driver line-up for 2023 with Toyota.
M-Sport Ford driver line-up 2023
Rally car – Puma WRC
If you thought that tired from the Hyundai, estonian rally star Ott Tanak retired from the WRC, you probably wrong, as recharged Tanak returns with even more power to jumping for new victories with co-driver Martin Jarveoja at the wheel of M-Sport Ford Puma WRC rally car.
Pierre-Louis Loubet is in the deal with co-driver Nicholas Gilsoul.
Sébastien Loeb is a strong shoulder for the M-Sport Ford rally team. Although Loeb is interested in a different car racing series and is very successful, no official announcement has been made. Dakar Rally 2023 is at issue in this case. Despite the rumours, Loeb is likely to drive part-time for the team in 2023.
WRC driver line-up 2023 features old heroes facing new challenges. It raises many questions, such as can Ott Tanak regain his former glory or do we have chances to see a new star on the podium? Pierre-Louis Loubet, as an example. Additionally, it would be interesting to see if Kalle Rovanperä could repeat his success in 2023?
We will definitely find answers to each question!
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