Andrea Adamo is back in the WRC – this is why

The former Hyundai team principal is back and will be overseeing one of the most important fan engagement initiatives for 2025

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Two-time world title-winning team principal Andrea Adamo is back in the service park. And this time he doesn’t have a DirtFish microphone in his hand.

We enjoyed the company of the former Hyundai chief a couple of years ago when he joined us for our on-event coverage of Rally Portugal, but since he’s been missing from a backyard he made his own with those championship years in 2019 and 2020.

It was Portugal again, but this time he was in civvies and back with the business face on. Not the scary business face, he had more of a determined look about him this time.

Privately, we’d an idea of what was going on, but it was WRC Promoter event director Simon Larkin who dropped into conversation that Adamo had been contracted to lead the promoter through the command center development phase to implementation in Monte Carlo at the top of the coming season.

Exactly what’s he doing? That’s still top secret, those details will come. Right now, it doesn’t matter.

The bigger point, the wider point here is that Adamo’s back and that’s a very good thing.

Granted, he wasn’t always the most popular show in town, but he was never interested in the popularity – he was all about the results, the wins and keeping Hyundai in the championship.


Hyundai were manufacturers' champions under Adamo in 2019 and 2020

Would the i20 still be a thing in the WRC today without Adamo’s efforts through 2021? Almost certainly not. It didn’t come cheap, certainly not to the charismatic leader himself – his health suffered and illness forced him to step down from the team he’d built into world champions.

These are not moments Andrea likes to talk about, but there are plenty around him who will do that for him.

“This guy,” DirtFish was told at the time, “this guy sweated blood for this team. Everybody here owes him everything – we wouldn’t be here without him and we won’t be the same without him.”

The latter might change this year, but for now it’s about right – there’s been no more season-long silverware added to the cabinet since he departed.

This sport is what gets Adamo out of bed in the morning and there are few – if any – rallying brains as sharp as his. He understands and reads the sport with exceptional vision and focus. To have him on the inside again and working us towards a better future in whatever shape the command center takes is great news for the sport.

The WRC Promoter will, no doubt, have an idea of what it can do with the command center, what tales can be told and how the data can be driven, the Italian won’t rest until he’s pushed them further, harder and faster to bring more, more and more again.

Adamo back in the WRC is a very good thing.