The WRC returns to Europe. After two races on american soil, the World Rally returns to the old continent and with it a list of registered bulk. The Rally of Portugal will have a total of 80 crews, a number far superior to that recorded in Argentina and Mexico, while many riders return to competition or start their sports programs in this test. Thanks to this, 19 World Rally Car will start in the vicinity of Porto, a figure to which must be added the 25 cars of the category WRC2 and the premiere competitive of the JWRC and the Drive DMACK.
In the premiere category, the entry list is extensive and carats, starting with the three Volkswagen drivers. Sébastien Ogier, Jari-Matti Latvala and Andreas Mikkelsen seem to be the rivals to beat in Portugal, with the permission of Hayden Paddon, which reaches to the test after adding his first win in the WRC in the last Rally of Argentina. The new zealander will team up with Dani Sordo at the time of score points for Hyundai, while Thierry Neuville is relegated to the third Hyundai i20 WRC. The belgian will be joined in the Hyundai N by Kevin Abbring, while the Dutch will compete with a car of 2015.
With the return of the WRC to Europe, the official drivers of Citroën make an appearance. In this way, three will be the Citroën DS3 WRC that will take the exit in Oporto, piloted by Kris Meeke, Stéphane Lefebvre and Khalid Al-Qassimi. With the Mini JCW WRC for Valeriy Gorban as ‘entity’ alternative, the rest of the World Rally Car present in Portugal, are the Ford Fiesta RS WRC. At the controls of the model of M-Sport will be Mads Ostberg and Eric Camilli in quality of official drivers and Ott Tanak as a pilot DMACK. They are in addition to Martin Prokop and Jaroslav Melichárek, Yazeed Al-Rajhi, Henning Solberg and Lorenzo Bertelli.
More juicy is the list of participants in WRC2 with a total of 21 crews in the competition. The favorites split their bets between the Ford Fiesta R5 and the Skoda Fabia R5, which makes predicting a great fight. With the model of M-Sport to compete Elfyn Evans, Teemu Suninen, Marius Aasen or Sander Pärn, in addition to the Spanish Gustavo Javier Sosa. For its part, the Fabia R5 is the vehicle of Pontus Tidemand and Jan Kopecký as official drivers of the brand, but also of Hubert Ptaszek, Nicholas Fuchs, Abdulaziz Al-Kuwari, Scott Pedder, Ghislain De Mevius or Julien Maurin.
The R5 of the PSA Group are in the minority but they are drawn as alternatives to power, all time on a Citroën DS3 R5 to compete Quentin Gilbert and Yoann Bonato, while the only Peugeot 208 T16 R5 is José Antonio ‘Rocket’ Suarez. For its part, the category WRC3 because it is not ghetto exclusive of Michel Febre and without the presence of the French, six drivers will look for the victory in Portugal, with Michael Burri with the Renault Clio RS official the main favorite to win after getting last year’s victory in the cup-brand of Renault.
finally, the Rally of Portugal serves to host the premiere competitive of the JWRC and the Drive DMACK. In the case of the World Junior, eleven will be enrolled at the wheel of the Citroën DS3 R3T Max, besides participating all of them in a category of its own WRC3. The big names of the category seem to be Martin Koci, Simone Tempestini and Ole Christian Veiby. For his part, in the Drive DMACK Fiesta Trophy are ten participants with Bernardo Sousa and Max Vatanen as the big favorite to victory in Portugal at the wheel of the Ford Fiesta R2T.