WRC teams to pull together during coronavirus crisis

Manufacturers working with small teams to help them through unprecedented situation

Rally Sweden service

Teams in the World Rally Championship have vowed to pull together to look after everybody in the service park during the coronavirus crisis.

With the forthcoming WRC rounds in Portugal and Sardinia now formally postponed and no prospect of rallying taking place anywhere in the world, leading figures are concerned about teams at every level.

M-Sport and Hyundai Motorsport are the two operations that see the sport at a variety of levels, from their WRC programs down through regional and national-level rallying.

Hyundai Motorsport director Andrea Adamo told DirtFish: “It’s very difficult times in the market for the R5 and the TCR cars. We are working with smaller teams and we can see what they are going through and we have to hope they can survive – we need to work with these teams.

“I live in motorsport for 30 years and never [did] we see problems like these. No team principal ever saw anything like this. We try to invest and support everybody, we cannot complain about this time, we have to work with it. You think somebody knows exactly what to do now? No. These are new things, new scenarios.

“All the teams, we all talk. I talk with Mike Norton [Ford Performance], with Mitch [Masaaki Ichikawa, Toyota Gazoo Racing], with Richy [Richard Millener, M-Sport] and Tommi [Mäkinen, Toyota Gazoo Racing] and say, ‘Guys, f***ing hell! We need to pull the boat in the same direction. We are in the stormy sea right now’.

“If we don’t do this then this thing can blow up and the weakest will die.”

Adamo praised the sense of calm being shown from Hyundai Motor Corporation in Korea.

“I have very intelligent bosses,” added Adamo. “They don’t ask what I cannot deliver. We didn’t see times like this since World War II and we have to be careful how we plan for the future and how we come back.”