It’s a long time since Dani Sordo’s last meaningful run in a Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC, but the disappointment of an early bath on Rally México will be wiped from the Spaniard’s mind this week when he starts Rally di Roma.
Sordo will also start a hastily arranged national event after this week’s European Rally Championship opener, in which Hyundai Customer Racing Junior Driver Pierre-Louis Loubet will be making his World Rally Car debut in a second i20 Coupe WRC.
Italian ‘Pedro’ drives M-Sport’s Ford Fiesta WRC, ensuring Hyundai doesn’t hog the limelight in the three-car Rally Stars entry list. This is a competition running alongside the ERC rally and is open exclusively to the latest generation of World Rally Cars.
The Fiuggi-based event is the beginning of an eight-day Italian odyssey, with reigning world champion Ott Tänak and Thierry Neuville rolling in for the following week’s Rally di Alba.
Four Hyundai i20 Coupe WRCs take the start of the August 2 single-day event, with the Estonian and Belgian joined by Loubet and Luca Pedersoli. Italian driver Pedersoli will have his car supplied by French squad 2C Compétition.
Alba will mark Hyundai’s strongest ever entry in a rally, with 16 i20 R5s backing up the top-class Rally1 machinery.
Irishman Craig Breen backs up his Team MRF entry in the ERC – where he will be one of the victory favorites but focusing on tire development – with a Alba outing in one of Hyundai’s machines, and Sordo steps down from the i20 Coupe WRC to join him in a two-car BRC Racing line-up.
Breen has also recently been confirmed to be returning to the Korean manufacturer’s WRC line-up for Rally Estonia, and may also contest Ypres Rally if it is added to the 2020 calendar.
DirtFish will be right at the heart of the Italian action this week, with Colin Clark, Heikki Barsk and David Evans forming a three-man team to bring you the inside line on both events and some fascinating content from the week in between.
Stay tuned to DirtFish and all our social channels to keep in touch with all the action as international rallying kicks off in the Italian capital this week.