Winner of 2016 and 2018, Thierry Heuville (Hyundai) is approaching the Sardinia Championship, from Thursday to Sunday, the sixth round of the WRC world championship, with a record five podium finishes. It is a favorite meeting for the Korean team, winners of five of the last seven editions.
Still, Hyundai and Thierry Neuville they are in doubt this year, having not yet been able to achieve success. The victim of a turbo-compressor failure in the final stages of the Rally in Portugal two weeks ago, the 34-year-old Belgian driver knows that he is likely to collect the big units on Sardinian soil.
At the same time, the competition is reaping important milestones: Toyota has already achieved four successes in 2023 (Sebastien Ogier in Monte Carlo and Mexico, Elfin Evans in Croatia and Ancient Rovanpera in Portugal) against one of Ford’sOtt Tanak. This is reflected in the constructors’ classification: the Japanese team has a total of 201 points, against 169 for Hyundai and 134 for Ford.
Thierry Neuville comes into this sixth round of the season in fifth place in the championship, with 68 units. Sebastien Ogier (Toyota) and Elfin Evans (Toyota) not far, step forward, timeOtt Tanak (Ford, 81) and specifically Ancient Rovanpera (Toyota, 98) went around.
Sebastien Ogier we will be on a trip to Sardinia while paying close attention to the performance of Dani Sordo (Hyundai). In the last four matches of the Spanish veteran in this round, he has climbed the podium three times: victory in 2019, victory in 2020 and third place in 2022.
The shakedown will take place on Thursday morning (9:01 am), a few hours before the first special (6:05 pm). The ‘real’ start will be on Friday, with six special programmes.