World Rally Championship

Last updated
World Rally Championship
WRC.svg
Category World Rally Car
CountryInternational
Inaugural season 1973
Manufacturers4
Tire suppliers M , P , D
Drivers' champion Flag of France.svg Sébastien Ogier
Co-drivers' champion Flag of France.svg Julien Ingrassia
Constructors' champion Flag of Japan.svg Toyota
Official website www.wrc.com
Motorsport current event.svg Current season

The World Rally Championship (WRC) is a rallying series organised by the FIA, culminating with a champion driver, co-driver and manufacturer. The driver's world championship and manufacturer's world championship are separate championships, but based on the same point system. The series currently consists of 14 three-day events driven on surfaces ranging from gravel and tarmac to snow and ice. Each rally is split into 15–25 special stages which are run against the clock on closed roads. [1]

Rallying form of motorsport where modified or specially built road-legal compete not on a circuit, but instead in a point-to-point format

Rally is a form of motorsport that takes place on public or private roads with modified production or specially built road-legal cars. It is distinguished by running not on a circuit, but instead in a point-to-point format in which participants and their co-drivers drive between set control points, leaving at regular intervals from one or more start points. Rallies may be won by pure speed within the stages or alternatively by driving to a predetermined ideal journey time within the stages.

Fédération Internationale de lAutomobile international sport governing body

The Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile is an association established on 20 June 1904 to represent the interests of motoring organisations and motor car users. To the general public, the FIA is mostly known as the governing body for many auto racing events. The FIA also promotes road safety around the world.

Special stage (rallying)

A special stage (SS) is a section of closed road at a stage rallying event. Racers attempt to complete the stage in the shortest time. A race on a special stage is coordinated such that each competing racer begins after a set interval, to reduce the chance of impedance by other competitors. Each special stage is a relatively short section, usually up to about 30 miles in length. A rally usually comprises approximately 15–30 special stages. The driver with the lowest overall time for all special stages in an event is the winner.

Contents

The WRC was formed from well-known and popular international rallies, most of which had previously been part of the European Rally Championship or the International Championship for Manufacturers, and the series was first contested in 1973. The World Rally Car is the current car specification in the series. It evolved from Group A cars which replaced the banned Group B supercars. World Rally Cars are built on production 1.6-litre four-cylinder cars, but feature turbochargers, anti-lag systems, four-wheel-drive, sequential gearboxes, aerodynamic parts and other enhancements bringing the price of a WRC car to around US$1 million (€700,000 / £500,000). [2]

European Rally Championship annual rallying championship series in Europe

The European Rally Championship is an automobile rally competition held annually on the European continent and organized by the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA). The championship has been organized since 1953 and have disputed in different European countries, alternating between rallies on asphalt and gravel. It was the first supranational rally championship that was organized in the world and therefore the oldest one. In 2012 it had 60 editions and in 2013 its was renewed with the merger with the Intercontinental Rally Challenge.

International Championship for Manufacturers 1970-1972 annual rallying championship series for rally car manufacturers

The FIA International Championship for Manufacturers (IMC) was a rally series culminating in a champion manufacturer. The championship was run from 1970 to 1972 and it was replaced by the FIA World Rally Championship in 1973. All the nine rallies of the 1972 IMC season were part of the 1973 World Rally Championship season.

The 1973 World Rally Championship was the inaugural season for the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA) World Rally Championship (WRC) format. It consisted of 13 events, each held in a different country of the world. Many of the events would be staples of the series through to today, including Monte Carlo, Sweden, Tour de Corse, and the RAC Rally, while others would soon be replaced in the schedule. As with following seasons, gravel events formed the majority of the schedule. Two pure tarmac and one snow and ice rally were also included, as well as three events held on a mixture of soft and hard surface roads.

The WRC features three support championships, the Junior World Rally Championship (JWRC, formerly the WRC Academy), the World Rally Championship-2 (WRC 2, formerly the Super 2000 World Rally Championship), and the World Rally Championship-3 (WRC-3, formerly the Production World Rally Championship) which are contested on the same events and stages as the WRC, but with different regulations. The WRC-2, WRC-3 and junior entrants race through the stages after the WRC drivers.

The FIA World Rally Championship-2 or WRC-2, is a companion rally series to the World Rally Championship, and is driven on the same stages. WRC-2 is limited to production-based cars homologated under the Super 2000, N4, R5 rules. The series began in 2010 and split the Production World Rally Championship (P-WRC), which was previously open to both Super 2000 and Group N4 cars, into two separate competitions, both of which received their own FIA titles. There was also a World Rally Championship Cup for Teams within the S-WRC but this was discontiniued after 2010. From 2013, WRC-2 replaced S-WRC.

World Rally Championship-3 rallying championship series for drivers of production-based cars

The FIA World Rally Championship-3, or WRC-3, was a companion rally series to the World Rally Championship, and was driven on the same stages. WRC-3 was limited to production-based cars homologated under the R1, R2 and R3 rules. The series began in 2002, replacing the FIA Cup for Production Rally Drivers, and continued for 16 years until its cancellation at the end of 2018. The cars used were Group N modified road cars, often based on turbocharged, four wheel drive versions of standard small cars such as the Subaru Impreza WRX and the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution, although a wide range of vehicles are homologated by the FIA for use in Group N. Apart from FIA sanctioned events, a lot of rallies at national levels are run under Group N.

History

Early

Group 4 Lancia Stratos HF. Lancia-Stratos-HF-Group-4-'.jpg
Group 4 Lancia Stratos HF.

The World Rally Championship was formed from well-known international rallies, nine of which were previously part of the International Championship for Manufacturers (IMC), which was contested from 1970 to 1972. The 1973 World Rally Championship was the inaugural season of the WRC and began with the Monte Carlo Rally on January 19.

The 1973 Monte Carlo Rally, run in late January and hosted in the principality of Monaco, was the first rally on the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile's (FIA) new World Rally Championship (WRC) inaugural season, making it the first ever WRC event to be held.

Alpine-Renault won the first manufacturer's world championship with its Alpine A110, after which Lancia took the title three years in a row with the Ferrari V6-powered Lancia Stratos HF, the first car designed and manufactured specifically for rallying. The first drivers' world championship was not awarded until 1979, although 1977 and 1978 seasons included an FIA Cup for Drivers, won by Italy's Sandro Munari and Finland's Markku Alén respectively. Sweden's Björn Waldegård became the first official world champion, edging out Finland's Hannu Mikkola by one point. Fiat took the manufacturers' title with the Fiat 131 Abarth in 1977, 1978 and 1980, Ford with its Escort RS1800 in 1979 and Talbot with its Sunbeam Lotus in 1981. Waldegård was followed by German Walter Röhrl and Finn Ari Vatanen as drivers' world champions.

Alpine A110 sports car

The Alpine A110 is a sports car produced by French automobile manufacturer Alpine from 1961 to 1977. The car was styled as a "Berlinetta", which in the post-WWII era refers to a small enclosed two-door Berline, better-known as a coupé. The Alpine A110 succeeded the earlier A108. The car was powered by a succession of Renault engines. A modern iteration of the A110 was introduced in 2017 developed under Renault-Nissan partnership.

Lancia automobile brand manufacturing subsidiary of Fiat Chrysler

Lancia was an Italian automobile manufacturer founded in 1906 by Vincenzo Lancia as Lancia & C.. It became part of the Fiat Group in 1969; the current company, Lancia Automobiles, was established in 2007.

The 1979 World Rally Championship was the seventh season of the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA) World Rally Championship (WRC). The season consisted of 12 rallies, one more than the previous year. The addition marked the return to New Zealand, an event which would remain on the schedule through today.

Group B era

Group B Audi Quattro S1. Audi Sport Quattaro S1 E2 in 2014 001.jpg
Group B Audi Quattro S1.

The 1980s saw the rear-wheel-drive Group 2 and the more popular Group 4 cars be replaced by more powerful four-wheel-drive Group B cars. FISA legalized all-wheel-drive in 1979, but most manufacturers believed it was too complex to be successful. However, after Audi started entering Mikkola and the new four-wheel-drive Quattro in rallies for testing purposes with immediate success, other manufacturers started their all-wheel-drive projects. Group B regulations were introduced in the 1982, and with only a few restrictions allowed almost unlimited power. Audi took the constructors' title in 1982 and 1984 and drivers' title in 1983 (Mikkola) and 1984 (Stig Blomqvist). Audi's French female driver Michèle Mouton came close to winning the title in 1982, but had to settle for second place after Opel rival Röhrl. 1985 title seemed set to go to Vatanen and his Peugeot 205 T16 but a bad accident at the Rally Argentina left him to watch compatriot and teammate Timo Salonen take the title instead. Italian Attilio Bettega had even a more severe crash with his Lancia 037 at the Tour de Corse and died instantly.

Group 2 (racing) FIA classification for cars in auto racing and Rally racing that preceded Group A

The Group 2 racing class referred to regulations for cars in touring car racing and rallying, as regulated by the FIA. Group 2 was replaced by Group A in 1982.

Group 4 (racing)

The Group 4 racing class referred to regulations for cars in sportscar racing, GT racing and rallying, as regulated by the FIA. The Group 4 class was replaced by Group B for the 1983 season.

Group B race car class

Group B was a set of regulations introduced in 1982 for competition vehicles in sportscar racing and rallying regulated by the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA). The Group B regulations fostered some of the fastest, most powerful, and most sophisticated rally cars ever built and is commonly referred to as the golden era of rallying. However, a series of major accidents, some of them fatal, were blamed on their outright speed and lack of crowd control at events. After the death of Henri Toivonen and his co-driver Sergio Cresto in the 1986 Tour de Corse, the FIA disestablished the class, dropped its previous plans to replace it by Group S, and instead replaced it as the top-line formula by Group A. The short-lived Group B era has acquired legendary status among rally fans and automobile enthusiasts in general.

Group B Ford RS200. FoS20162016 0624 153545AA (27785248012).jpg
Group B Ford RS200.
Group B Lancia Delta S4. Lancia Delta S4.jpg
Group B Lancia Delta S4.

The 1986 started with impressive performances by Finns Henri Toivonen and Alén in Lancia's new turbo- and supercharged Delta S4, which could reportedly accelerate from 0–60 mph (96 km/h) in 2.3 seconds, on a gravel road. [3] However, the season soon took a dramatic turn. At the Rally Portugal, three spectators were killed and over 30 injured after Joaquim Santos lost control of his Ford RS200. At the Tour de Corse, championship favourite Toivonen and his co-driver Sergio Cresto died in a fireball accident after plunging down a cliff. Only hours after the crash, Jean-Marie Balestre and the FISA decided to freeze the development of the Group B cars and ban them from competing in 1987. More controversy followed when Peugeot's Juha Kankkunen won the title after FIA annulled the results of the San Remo Rally, taking the title from fellow Finn Markku Alén.

Group A era

Group A Lancia Delta HF Integrale. Lancia is the manufacturer with the most wins in the WRC: 11 world Championship for Manufacturers, with 6 consecutives. Lancia Delta Integrale - Flickr - exfordy (1).jpg
Group A Lancia Delta HF Integrale. Lancia is the manufacturer with the most wins in the WRC: 11 world Championship for Manufacturers, with 6 consecutives.
Group A Toyota Celica GT-Four ST205. Toyota Celica GT-FOUR 02.jpg
Group A Toyota Celica GT-Four ST205.
Group A Ford Escort RS Cosworth. Wilson Escort.jpg
Group A Ford Escort RS Cosworth.

As the planned Group S was also cancelled, Group A regulations became the standard in the WRC until 1997. A separate Group A championship had been organized as part of the WRC already in 1986, with Sweden's Kenneth Eriksson taking the title with a Volkswagen Golf GTI 16V. [4] Lancia was quickest in adapting to the new regulations and controlled the world rally scene with Lancia Delta HF, winning the constructors' title six years in a row from 1987 to 1992 and remains the most successful marque in the history of the WRC. Kankkunen and Miki Biasion both took two drivers' titles with the Lancia Delta HF. The 1990s then saw the Japanese manufacturers, Toyota, Subaru and Mitsubishi, become title favourites. Spain's Carlos Sainz driving for Toyota Team Europe took the 1990 and 1992 titles with a Toyota Celica GT-Four. Kankkunen moved to Toyota for the 1993 season and won his record fourth title, with Toyota taking its first manufacturers' crown. Frenchman Didier Auriol brought the team further success in 1994, and soon Subaru and Mitsubishi continued the success of the Japanese constructors. Subaru's Scotsman Colin McRae won the drivers' world championship in 1995 and Subaru took the manufacturers' title three years in a row. Finland's Tommi Mäkinen driving a Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution won the drivers' championship four times in a row, from 1996 to 1999. Mitsubishi also won the manufacturers' title in 1998. Another notable car was the Ford Escort RS Cosworth, which was specifically designed for rallying. It was the first production car to produce downforce both at front and rear.

World Rally Car era

Richard Burns in his Subaru Impreza WRC after a Finnish stage. Ss1 5rb.jpg
Richard Burns in his Subaru Impreza WRC after a Finnish stage.
Peugeot 307 WRC and Ford Focus RS WRC 07 on a road section during the 2008 Monte Carlo Rally. Cuoq and Latvala - 2008 Monte Carlo Rally 2.jpg
Peugeot 307 WRC and Ford Focus RS WRC 07 on a road section during the 2008 Monte Carlo Rally.

For the 1997 World Rally Championship, the World Rally Car regulations were introduced as an intended replacement for Group A (only successive works Mitsubishis still conforming to the latter formula; until they, too, homologated a Lancer Evolution WRC from the 2001 San Remo Rally). After the success of Mäkinen and the Japanese manufacturers, France's Peugeot made a very successful return to the World Rally Championship. Finn Marcus Grönholm took the drivers' title in his first full year in the series and Peugeot won the manufacturers' crown. England's Richard Burns won the 2001 title with a Subaru Impreza WRC, but Grönholm and Peugeot took back both titles in the 2002. 2003 saw Norway's Petter Solberg become drivers' champion for Subaru and Citroën continue the success of the French manufacturers. Citroën's Sébastien Loeb went on to control the following seasons with his Citroën Xsara WRC. Citroën took the constructors' title three times in a row and Loeb surpassed Mäkinen's record of four consecutive drivers' titles, earning his ninth consecutive championship in 2012. Volkswagen Motorsport entered the championship in 2013 and Sebastien Ogier dominated the series with six consecutive titles. New World Rally Car rules were introduced for 2017 which generated faster and more aggressive cars.

In 2018, Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT won the World Rally Championship earning Toyota their first manufacturers' title since 1999. [5] With Tommi Mäkinen heading the team, he became the first person in the history of rally driving to win a Championship both as a driver and as a team principal. [6]

Structure

Skoda preparing their cars a day before the shakedown. Skoda Motorsport 2005.jpg
Škoda preparing their cars a day before the shakedown .

Each season normally consists of 13 rallies driven on surfaces ranging from gravel and tarmac to snow and ice. Points from these events are calculated towards the drivers' and manufacturers' world championships. The driver's championship and manufacturer's championship are separate championships, but based on the same point system. This means, for example, that Petter Solberg driving for Subaru can win the driver's championship but Citroën can win the manufacturer's championship, which is what happened in 2003, and again in 2006 and 2007 when Sébastien Loeb took his third and fourth WRC titles but Ford won the manufacturer's championship.

Under the current points system, points are awarded at the end of each rally to the top ten overall finishers in the World Rally Championship standings, as well as to the top ten finishers within the Super 2000 and Production Car (also known as WRC 2), two-wheel drive (also known as WRC 3) and Junior World Rally Championships. All categories use the following points structure:

Position 1st  2nd  3rd  4th  5th  6th  7th  8th  9th  10th 
Points251815121086421

Despite how many drivers are in one team, constructors may only nominate two drivers to score points for the team as well as scoring for themselves. As only nominated drivers are counted while awarding points, competitors placed further down the final standings than tenth overall (if preceded by privateer drivers) can score them.

A stadium-based super special stage in Argentina. Gronholm vs. Loeb.jpg
A stadium-based super special stage in Argentina.

In the current era, each rally usually consists of between fifteen and thirty special stages of distances ranging from under 2 km (1.2 mi) (known as super special stages) to over 50 kilometres (31 mi). These competitive stages are driven on closed roads which are linked by non-competitive road sections—open roads on which all road laws of that country must be adhered to. On average a day consists of a total of 400 kilometres (250 mi) of driving. [7] A WRC event begins with reconnaissance (recce) on Tuesday and Wednesday, allowing crews to drive through the stages and create or update their pace notes. On Thursday, teams can run through the shakedown stage to practice and test their set-ups. The competition typically begins on Friday and ends on Sunday, though some rallies—most notably the Monte Carlo Rally—may be run over four or five days. Cars start the stages at two-minute intervals in clear weather, or three-minute intervals if it is decided that visibility may be a problem for competitors. Each day, or leg , has a few designated service parks between the stages, where the teams can – within strict time limits – perform maintenance and repairs on their cars. The service park also allows spectators and the media to get close to the teams and their cars and drivers. Between the days, after a 45-minute end of day service, cars are locked away in parc fermé, [7] a quarantine environment where teams are not permitted to access or work on their cars.

Power stage

First introduced in 2011, the "power stage" is the final stage of the rally. Additional World Championship points are available to the three (until 2016) fastest drivers through the stage (regardless of where they actually finished in the rally), with the fastest team receiving three points, the second-fastest receiving two points, and the third-fastest receiving one point. In 2017 the scoring system was amended so the five fastest drivers through the stage were awarded points from five for first to one for fifth. For special stages, timing will be to the tenth of a second. For the "Power Stage", timing will be to the thousandth of a second. [8]

Rally 2

Originally known as "SuperRally," Rally 2 is a set of regulations that allow a driver who retires from an event to re-enter the next day at the cost of a seven-minute time penalty for each missed stage (ten-minute penalty if only one stage is missed). This allows drivers who retire from an event to continue on and compete for World Championship points; however, if they retire on the final leg of a rally, re-entering is not possible. Similarly, the use of Rally 2 regulations is at the discretion of event organisers.

Cars

Andy Priaulx driving a Ford Focus RS WRC 07 at the 2007 Race of Champions. Andy Priaulx - 2007 Race of Champions 2.jpg
Andy Priaulx driving a Ford Focus RS WRC 07 at the 2007 Race of Champions.

The current cars with 1.6 L direct injection turbo engines and four-wheel drive are built to World Rally Car regulations for racing across tarmac, gravel and snow. The power output is limited to around 380 bhp (225 kW). Current cars in the championship include the Citroën C3 WRC, Ford Fiesta WRC, Toyota Yaris WRC and the Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC. The Volkswagen Polo R WRC ended its run with the close of the 2016 season. [9]

The WRC was formerly held for Group A and Group B rallycars. However, due to the increasing power, lack of reliability and a series of fatal accidents during the 1986 rally, Group B was permanently banned. Later, in 1997, the Group A cars evolved into the WRC car spec, to ease the development of new cars and bring new makes to the competition. In 2011, new rules were introduced to encourage more manufacturers (and privateers) to take part, because the recent economic downturn had prompted several manufacturers to leave the championship.

Cars in the Production Car World Rally Championship are limited to production-based cars homologated under Group N rules. Cars in the Super 2000 World Rally Championship are homologated under Super 2000 rules. Most cars in the Junior World Rally Championship are homologated under Super 1600 rules, but Group N and selected Group A cars can also contest the series.

Starting in 2013, a new category of rally cars known as Group R were introduced as a replacement to the Group A and Group N rally categories, with cars classified under one of six categories based on their engine capacity and type, wheelbase, and drivetrain. As a result, no cars will be homologated under Group A and Group N regulations and instead will be reclassified under Group R. Parallel to this, the Super 2000 and Production Car World Championships were restructured; Super 2000 and Group N cars were merged into a single championship known as World Rally Championship-2 alongside R4 and R5 cars, whilst the Production Car World Championship was completely reimagined as the World Rally Championship-3 for two-wheel drive cars complying with R1, R2 and R3 regulations.

Teams and drivers

Ford's Marcus Gronholm at the Bunnings Jumps of the 2006 Rally Australia. Marcus Gronholm Bunnings Jumps.jpg
Ford's Marcus Grönholm at the Bunnings Jumps of the 2006 Rally Australia.

21 different manufacturers have won a World Rally Championship event, [10] and a further 11 have finished on the podium. [11]

Suzuki and Subaru pulled out of the WRC at the end of the 2008 championship, both citing the economic downturn then affecting the automotive industry for their withdrawal. Mini and Ford both pulled out of the WRC at the end of the 2012 championship, due to a similar economic downturn affecting the European market, although Ford continued to give technical support to M-Sport.

A typical WRC team will consist of about 40 people on the events, with a further 60–100 at the team base. [12]

Manufacturers and manufacturer-backed teams usually have two or three drivers participating in each rally who are eligible to score points. The total number of crews (driver and their co-driver) in the rallies varied from 47 (Monte Carlo and Mexico) to 108 (Great Britain) during the 2007. [13]

In 2012, the Ford World Rally Team and the Mini WRC Team both announced their departure from the World Rally Championships for the 2013 season. Volkswagen and Hyundai made their return to the championship in 2013 and 2014, respectively. Toyota announced it will return to the World Rally Championships for the 2017 season [14] with its Toyota Gazoo Racing team and its Toyota Yaris WRC car. Also Citroën will return to the sport in 2017 with a fully factory-supported team after competing part-time in 2016 to focus on the development of their 2017-generation brand-new car based on the Citroën C3.

Coverage

TV

A cameraman at a hairpin turn at the 2007 Rallye Deutschland. Jari-Matti Latvala - 2007 Rallye Deutschland.jpg
A cameraman at a hairpin turn at the 2007 Rallye Deutschland.

Promoter GmbH owns the commercial rights to the championship and through WRC TV produces daily updates from each event after the day's stages have finished and the TV coverage has been processed. These daily highlight programs are 30 minutes in duration and cover in depth the day's stages, with in-car footage as well as driver interviews. Before the rally there is also a magazine-style preview programme that normally incorporates special driver, technical and team features as well as providing an overview of the upcoming rally's route. There is also a post-event review program, which lasts approximately an hour, that summarises the rally and the big events that took place during the event.

Mitsubishi service park at the 2005 Cyprus Rally. Mitsubishi WRT - 2005 Cyprus Rally.jpg
Mitsubishi service park at the 2005 Cyprus Rally.

This is then shown in more than 150 markets in multiple languages. The make up and format for these programmes can change from country to country depending on the local broadcaster but all use WRC TV.

In the United Kingdom, coverage of the 2017 season is split between four broadcasters. Channel 5 broadcasts the post-event review, while the preview programme is screened on its Spike network. BT Sport has rights to live stages and daily highlights, Motors TV has highlights rights and Welsh language channel S4C also covers the championship in its Ralio programme. [15]

In 2016, the cumulative worldwide TV audience for WRC TV's programmes was more than 700 million. The programming was available in over 150 markets and more than 12,000 hours were screened globally. [16]

Radio

Live radio coverage was provided in English by WRC Live via the Internet, featuring end of stage reports direct from the drivers and teams plus service park news. They also produced podcasts. It also featured contemporary music during breaks in rally coverage. [17]

Currently the radio plays the sound of WRC+ All Live. [18]

Internet streaming

Coverage is provided by WRC Promoter GmbH via video on demand at its WRC+ website featuring live special stages, highlights, timing, onboard footage and live map tracking. [19]

From 2018, WRC+ All Live was introduced, producing live coverage from all the stages during rally event. [19]

Champions

Marcus Gronholm at the 2002 Rallye Deutschland with Peugeot 206 WRC. Gronholm Deutschland 2002.jpg
Marcus Grönholm at the 2002 Rallye Deutschland with Peugeot 206 WRC.
Petter Solberg at the 2006 Cyprus Rally. Petter Solberg - 2006 Cyprus Rally.jpg
Petter Solberg at the 2006 Cyprus Rally.
Sebastien Loeb during the Rally Catalunya 2008 with Citroen C4 WRC. Sebastien Loeb - 2008 Rally Catalunya.jpg
Sébastien Loeb during the Rally Catalunya 2008 with Citroën C4 WRC.
Sebastien Loeb at the 2011 Rally de Portugal with Citroen DS3 WRC. Loeb 2011 WRC Portugal.jpg
Sébastien Loeb at the 2011 Rally de Portugal with Citroën DS3 WRC.
Sebastien Ogier at the 2016 Rally de Portugal with Volkswagen Polo R WRC. Sebastien Ogier Baiao Rally de portugal 2016.jpg
Sébastien Ogier at the 2016 Rally de Portugal with Volkswagen Polo R WRC.
SeasonChampionship for DriversChampionship for Manufacturers
DriverCarManufacturerCar
2018 Flag of France.svg Sébastien Ogier Ford Fiesta WRC Flag of Japan.svg Toyota Toyota Yaris WRC
2017 Flag of France.svg Sébastien Ogier Ford Fiesta WRC Flag of the United Kingdom.svg Ford [lower-alpha 1] [lower-alpha 2] Ford Fiesta WRC
2016 Flag of France.svg Sébastien Ogier Volkswagen Polo R WRC Flag of Germany.svg Volkswagen Volkswagen Polo R WRC
2015 Flag of France.svg Sébastien Ogier Volkswagen Polo R WRC Flag of Germany.svg Volkswagen Volkswagen Polo R WRC
2014 Flag of France.svg Sébastien Ogier Volkswagen Polo R WRC Flag of Germany.svg Volkswagen Volkswagen Polo R WRC
2013 Flag of France.svg Sébastien Ogier Volkswagen Polo R WRC Flag of Germany.svg Volkswagen Volkswagen Polo R WRC
2012 Flag of France.svg Sébastien Loeb Citroën DS3 WRC Flag of France.svg Citroën Citroën DS3 WRC
2011 Flag of France.svg Sébastien Loeb Citroën DS3 WRC Flag of France.svg Citroën Citroën DS3 WRC
2010 Flag of France.svg Sébastien Loeb Citroën C4 WRC Flag of France.svg Citroën Citroën C4 WRC
2009 Flag of France.svg Sébastien Loeb Citroën C4 WRC Flag of France.svg Citroën Citroën C4 WRC
2008 Flag of France.svg Sébastien Loeb Citroën C4 WRC Flag of France.svg Citroën Citroën C4 WRC
2007 Flag of France.svg Sébastien Loeb Citroën C4 WRC Flag of the United Kingdom.svg Ford [lower-alpha 2] Ford Focus RS WRC 06/07
2006 Flag of France.svg Sébastien Loeb Citroën Xsara WRC Flag of the United Kingdom.svg Ford [lower-alpha 2] Ford Focus RS WRC 06
2005 Flag of France.svg Sébastien Loeb Citroën Xsara WRC Flag of France.svg Citroën Citroën Xsara WRC
2004 Flag of France.svg Sébastien Loeb Citroën Xsara WRC Flag of France.svg Citroën Citroën Xsara WRC
2003 Flag of Norway.svg Petter Solberg Subaru Impreza WRC 2003 Flag of France.svg Citroën Citroën Xsara WRC
2002 Flag of Finland.svg Marcus Grönholm Peugeot 206 WRC Flag of France.svg Peugeot Peugeot 206 WRC
2001 Flag of the United Kingdom.svg Richard Burns Subaru Impreza WRC 2001 Flag of France.svg Peugeot Peugeot 206 WRC
2000 Flag of Finland.svg Marcus Grönholm Peugeot 206 WRC Flag of France.svg Peugeot Peugeot 206 WRC
1999 Flag of Finland.svg Tommi Mäkinen Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VI Flag of Japan.svg Toyota Toyota Corolla WRC
1998 Flag of Finland.svg Tommi Mäkinen Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution V Flag of Japan.svg Mitsubishi Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution V
1997 Flag of Finland.svg Tommi Mäkinen Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IV Flag of Japan.svg Subaru Subaru Impreza WRC
1996 Flag of Finland.svg Tommi Mäkinen Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution III Flag of Japan.svg Subaru Subaru Impreza 555
1995 Flag of the United Kingdom.svg Colin McRae Subaru Impreza 555 Flag of Japan.svg Subaru Subaru Impreza 555
1994 Flag of France.svg Didier Auriol Toyota Celica Turbo 4WD Flag of Japan.svg Toyota Toyota Celica Turbo 4WD
1993 Flag of Finland.svg Juha Kankkunen Toyota Celica Turbo 4WD Flag of Japan.svg Toyota Toyota Celica Turbo 4WD
1992 Flag of Spain.svg Carlos Sainz Toyota Celica Turbo 4WD Flag of Italy.svg Lancia Lancia Delta HF Integrale
1991 Flag of Finland.svg Juha Kankkunen Lancia Delta Integrale 16V Flag of Italy.svg Lancia Lancia Delta Integrale 16V
1990 Flag of Spain.svg Carlos Sainz Toyota Celica GT-Four Flag of Italy.svg Lancia Lancia Delta Integrale 16V
1989 Flag of Italy.svg Miki Biasion Lancia Delta Integrale Flag of Italy.svg Lancia Lancia Delta Integrale
1988 Flag of Italy.svg Miki Biasion Lancia Delta Integrale Flag of Italy.svg Lancia Lancia Delta Integrale
1987 Flag of Finland.svg Juha Kankkunen Lancia Delta HF 4WD Flag of Italy.svg Lancia Lancia Delta HF 4WD
1986 Flag of Finland.svg Juha Kankkunen Peugeot 205 Turbo 16 E2 Flag of France.svg Peugeot Peugeot 205 Turbo 16 E2
1985 Flag of Finland.svg Timo Salonen Peugeot 205 Turbo 16 Flag of France.svg Peugeot Peugeot 205 Turbo 16
1984 Flag of Sweden.svg Stig Blomqvist Audi Quattro Flag of Germany.svg Audi Audi Quattro
1983 Flag of Finland.svg Hannu Mikkola Audi Quattro Flag of Italy.svg Lancia Lancia Rally 037
1982 Flag of Germany.svg Walter Röhrl Opel Ascona 400 Flag of Germany.svg Audi Audi Quattro
1981 Flag of Finland.svg Ari Vatanen Ford Escort RS1800 Flag of the United Kingdom.svg Talbot Talbot Sunbeam Lotus
1980 Flag of Germany.svg Walter Röhrl Fiat 131 Abarth Flag of Italy.svg Fiat Fiat 131 Abarth
1979 Flag of Sweden.svg Björn Waldegård Ford Escort RS1800 [lower-alpha 3] Flag of the United States.svg Ford Ford Escort RS1800
1978 Flag of Finland.svg Markku Alén [lower-alpha 4] Fiat 131 Abarth [lower-alpha 5] Flag of Italy.svg Fiat Fiat 131 Abarth
1977 Flag of Italy.svg Sandro Munari [lower-alpha 4] Lancia Stratos HF Flag of Italy.svg Fiat Fiat 131 Abarth
1976 No drivers' championship [lower-alpha 6] Flag of Italy.svg Lancia Lancia Stratos HF
1975 Flag of Italy.svg Lancia Lancia Stratos HF
1974 Flag of Italy.svg Lancia Lancia Stratos HF
1973 Flag of France.svg Alpine-Renault Alpine-Renault A110

Event wins

Updated after 2019 Rally Mexico. Drivers and manufacturers who have participated in the 2019 World Rally Championship are in bold.

Evolution of the calendar

Rally7374757677787980818283848586878889909192939495969798990001020304050607080910111213141516171819Tot.
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg Wales Rally GB [lower-alpha 7] 46
Flag of France.svg Tour de Corse [lower-alpha 7] 40
Flag of Portugal.svg Portugal Rally [lower-alpha 7] 40
Flag of Finland.svg Rally Finland [lower-alpha 7] 46
Flag of Italy.svg Rally di Sanremo [lower-alpha 7] 30
Flag of Kenya.svg Safari Rally [lower-alpha 7] 29
Flag of the United States.svg Press-on-Regardless Rally 2
Flag of Monaco.svg Monte Carlo Rally [lower-alpha 7] 42
Flag of Greece.svg Acropolis Rally [lower-alpha 7] 38
Flag of Sweden.svg Swedish Rally [lower-alpha 7] 43
Flag of Morocco.svg Rallye du Maroc 3
Flag of Poland.svg Rally Poland 6
Flag of Austria.svg Österreichische Alpenfahrt 1
Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Rally Rideau Lakes 1
Flag of Canada (Pantone).svg Critérium du Quebec 3
Flag of New Zealand.svg Rally New Zealand [lower-alpha 7] 31
Flag of Cote d'Ivoire.svg Rallye Côte d'Ivoire [lower-alpha 8] 15
Flag of Argentina.svg Rally Argentina [lower-alpha 7] 38
Flag of Brazil.svg Rally Brazil 2
Flag of the United States.svg Olympus Rally 3
Flag of Australia (converted).svg Rally Australia [lower-alpha 7] 26
Flag of Spain.svg Rally Catalunya [lower-alpha 7] 29
Flag of Indonesia.svg Rally Indonesia 2
Flag of the People's Republic of China.svg Rally China [lower-alpha 9] 1
Flag of Cyprus.svg Cyprus Rally 8
Flag of Germany.svg Rallye Deutschland 17
Flag of Turkey.svg Rally of Turkey 8
Flag of Italy.svg Rally di Sardegna 15
Flag of Mexico.svg Rally Mexico 15
Flag of Japan.svg Rally Japan 6
Flag of Norway.svg Rally Norway 2
Flag of Ireland.svg Rally Ireland 2
Flag of Jordan.svg Rally Jordan 3
Flag of France.svg Rallye d'Alsace 5
Flag of Bulgaria.svg Rally Bulgaria 1
Flag of Chile.svg Rally Chile 1
Total1381010111112121213121212131313131214141310891413141414141416161616151213131313131313131314572

Other classes

A Super 1600 class Renault Clio. Renault Clio S1600.jpg
A Super 1600 class Renault Clio.
Fiat Grande Punto Abarth S2000. Grande Punto S2000 2.jpg
Fiat Grande Punto Abarth S2000.

The World Rally Championship also features support championships called the World Rally Championship-2 (previously known as S-WRC), the World Rally Championship-3 (previously known as P-WRC) and the Junior World Rally Championship (J-WRC). These championships are contested on the same events and stages as the WRC.

The Super 2000 World Rally Championship (S-WRC) was started in 2010. Within the Super 2000 category are competitions for drivers (known as the S-WRC) and another for teams (the World Rally Championship Cup). The cars in the championship are under the Super 2000 rules. [25] From 2013, WRC-2 replaced S-WRC and including cars with four-wheel drive (R5, R4 and S2000). [26] [27]

The Production car World Rally Championship (P-WRC) began in 2002, replacing the FIA Group N Cup which had been contested from 1987. Cars in the championship are production-based and homologated under Group N rules. [28] From 2013, the Production WRC was renamed WRC-3 including Group R cars with two-wheel drive (R3, R2 and R1). [26] [27] By the end of 2018, the World Rally Championship-3 will be discontinued and a new class will be created within the World Rally Championship-2. The class, known as World Rally Championship-2 Pro, will be open to manufacturer-supported teams entering cars complying with Group R5 regulations. [29]

The Junior World Rally Championship (J-WRC) was started in 2001, and can be contested with Super 1600, Group N and selected Group A cars. Drivers in the championship have to be 28 years or younger. There is no age limit for co-drivers. [30]

The World Rally Championship Ladies Cup ran from 1990 to 1995 and could be won by any class of car. Louise Aitken-Walker was the first winner. [31]

ClassWRCWRC-2WRC-3JWRC
GroupWRCS2000, N4, R5R1, R2, R3R3T, S1600
DrivetrainFour-wheel driveTwo-wheel drive
Minimum weight (kg)120012309801150
Typical power (hp)300280210163
Torque (N⋅m)450360350182

Video games

There have been many video games based on the World Rally Championship, and due to lack of licenses, many more based on only certain cars, drivers or events. Sega Rally was released in 1995, V-Rally and Top Gear Rally in 1997 and the first game in the very popular Colin McRae Rally series in 1998. Rally Trophy , released in 2001 for Microsoft Windows by Bugbear, concentrated on historic cars such as Alpine A110 and Lancia Stratos. RalliSport Challenge , released in 2002 for Windows and Xbox by Digital Illusions CE, featured classic Group B cars and hillclimb models along with modern WRC cars.

Fully FIA licensed WRC: World Rally Championship was released in 2001 for PlayStation 2 by Evolution Studios. The video game series had its fifth game, WRC: Rally Evolved , in 2005. Racing simulator Richard Burns Rally , released in 2004 for several platforms, has gathered recognition for its realism. Recent top-selling games include Colin McRae: DiRT 2 , Sega Rally Revo and Dirt 3 . Gran Turismo 5 will include the WRC totally licensed. In October 2010, Black Bean Games released WRC: FIA World Rally Championship which features the cars, drivers and events of the 2010 World Rally Championship, including those from the three support categories. A downloadable patch was produced allowing players to drive in Group B cars such as the Audi Quattro. [32] Various cars whose participated in the WRC such as Mitsubishi Lancer WRC and Ford Fiesta RS WRC have also appeared in the Facebook game Car Town . The WRC video game license was acquired by French game development studio Kylotonn from Milestone S.r.l. after the release of WRC 4: FIA World Rally Championship in 2013. The first WRC game by Kylotonn was WRC 5, released in 2015. This was followed by WRC 6 in 2016, and WRC 7 in 2017.

See also

Footnotes

  1. M-Sport is not the official Ford World Rally Team.
  2. 1 2 3 Ford competed from 19731985 with a U.S. racing license, and has competed since 1986 with a British racing licence. [20]
  3. Björn Waldegård drove a Mercedes 450 SLC in two rallies in 1979.
  4. 1 2 In 1977 and 1978, the drivers championship was the FIA Cup for Rally Drivers.
  5. Markku Alén drove a Lancia Stratos HF in two rallies in 1978.
  6. No drivers title 1973–1976.
  7. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 Valid only for 2 Litres Cup
  8. From 1982 to 1992 valid only for driver championship.
  9. The rally was cancelled during the season. [24]

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Group A was a set of motorsport regulations introduced by FIA covering production-derived vehicles intended for outright competition in Touring car racing and Rallying. In contrast to the short-lived Group B and Group C, the Group A referred to production-derived vehicles limited in terms of power, weight, allowed technology and overall cost. Group A was aimed at ensuring a large number of privately owned entries in races.

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  26. 1 2 "Exciting changes for 2013 WRC". www.nesterallyfinland.fi.
  27. 1 2 "Rally – Exciting Changes in WRC for 2013". 29 September 2012.
  28. "FIA Production car World Rally Championship". WRC.com. Retrieved 2007-01-26.
  29. Herrero, Daniel (13 October 2018). "Australia remains finale on 2019 WRC calendar". speedcafe.com . Speedcafe . Retrieved 13 October 2018.
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