Official: Hyundai finalises its driver line-up for 2023

Hyundai Motorsport announced today its drivers with whom the team will take part in World Rally Championship next year.

After Oliver Solberg's and Ott Tanak's departure, Hyundai Motorsport had two available seats for next season as Thierry Neuville has already a contract with the team which will expire at the end of 2023. 

Esapekka Lappi will join the Korean team with a full-season programme next year and the rumors of his departure from Toyota confirmed today. The Finn driver secured three podiums with the GR Yaris Rally1 this year and wanted to compete in all rounds of World Rally Championship in 2023, something that Toyota could not offer him as Kalle Rovanpera and Elfyn Evans will continue with full programmes while Sebastien Ogier will compete in a limited number of rallies next season.

Craig Breen will return to Hyundai for 2023 after his premature exit from M-Sport Ford which was announced yesterday. The Irisheman will share the third i20N Rally1 with Dani Sordo who was not sure if he would go on WRC as he wanted to see if he is still competitive. The Spaniard had said during Rally Spain that he would announce his decision about his future in WRC after Rally Japan.

"Life is full of surprises!", Lappi said. 

"Getting a chance to join Hyundai Motorsport and to drive a full-calendar WRC program was something we didn’t expect. 

"This is truly a dream and a unique opportunity; we are very happy to join the Hyundai Motorsport family. 

"The team showed during the 2022 season that it is capable of developing the car a lot during the season and has chances to win on every surface. 

"From what I've heard already, 2023 looks very promising. 

"We are well aware that there is a lot of work to do, but with Janne, I am committed to it. 

"I believe we have a lot to give to the whole team. 

"I want to thank Hyundai Motorsport for demonstrating their trust in us; we will do everything we can to be successful and to achieve our common goals".

Moreover, Sordo said: "The decision to sign again with Hyundai Motorsport was a clear and easy one for me; over ten years they have become a family. 

"This is my team and where I belong. 

"They have offered me another season in which I can share the third car with another crew, which suits my personal preferences. 

"I am motivated to support the team and the other crews as much as I can".

Finally, Breen stated: "Joining Hyundai Motorsport for the 2023 WRC season feels like a homecoming for me. 

"We have secured some very memorable results together in the past, including several runner-up results, so hopefully I will be able to take that a step further. 

"I have followed the team’s progress and development with interest this season, and I can see the momentum that has been building. 

"Having the backing of a manufacturer team like Hyundai is special, and I’m sure we’ll have plenty more reasons to celebrate next season".

Photo Credits: Hyundai

Post a Comment

Previous Post Next Post