M-Sport assured Ford’s F1 deal won’t affect WRC program

Malcolm Wilson believes Ford's Formula 1 tie-in with Red Bull will actually increase M-Sport's synergy with both brands


M-Sport managing director Malcolm Wilson is confident Ford’s return to Formula 1 alongside Red Bull will strengthen its World Rally Championship presence and performance.

Wilson talked through Ford’s F1 move with officials from Ford Performance ahead of the announcement and told DirtFish he was confident for the future.

“I’ve been assured today’s news will have no impact on our World Rally Championship program,” Wilson said.

“When you look at our car this season, I think you can see a stronger Red Bull presence and I would like to think the news [from today] can further strengthen the partnerships we have with Ford and Red Bull and bring more synergy to what we do.”

With Ford working at motorsport’s highest level of performance again, the Red Bull move could bring an opportunity for M-Sport’s rally program to benefit from Formula 1.

Ford Puma Rally12023 Livery Unveil January 2023Photo: Drew Gibson

Wilson added: “I don’t see any negatives to this.”

The potential for cross-over technological know-how is always something engineers are keen to explore in different disciplines, but the biggest question for rally fans has to be how long it takes before Ott Tänak gets to test last year’s RB18…

…Or Max Verstappen following in his father Jos’ footsteps and competing in his first rally.

Words:David Evans