Hyundai still does not quit fighting for this year's WRC title bid

The team principal of Hyundai Motorsport, Cyril Abiteboul, admits that his team is still focusing on this season's championship despite their car reliability issues, but he affirms that they are trying to improve the i20N for the next years.

The Alzenau-based team managed to close its gap from the leader Toyota at the end of Rally Sardinia by scoring nine points more than them and their gap was decreased from 32 to 23 points before the start of Safari Rally. However, Thierry Neuville and Esapekka Lappi were at the top five in Kenya, but they were forced to retire due to a broken suspension and a propshaft problem on Friday and Saturday respectively, therefore Dani Sordo was the only Hyundai driver who gave some valuable points for the manufacturers's championship as he finished in fifth place. In addition to that, Neuville managed to climb to eighth overall after the end of Powerstage, but the things went from bad to worse for Hyundai as the stewards and FIA decided to exclude Neuviille from Safari Rally as the Belgian wanted to gain advantage over his rivals illegally by having a person on the stages during the recce with the view of correcting his pacenotes before the start of the rally. This action had as a result for Hyundai to lose more ground compared to Toyota as their gap is now at 41 points.

"Our eyes are still very much on this year’s championship and anyway frankly there is no need for any form of trade-off this year vs next year, it doesn’t work like that", Abiteboul said.

"It works like that in other disciplines which I will not mention, but here we know that we are in a homologation cycle of five years, so anything that we can do this year will profit next year.

"So let’s focus about this year, let’s focus on the short term and let’s not think about what the car will be in five years from now.

"Clearly also there are some limitations with the WRC system so we also need to be smart and find ways to improve what we have and address the issues that we have, without constantly referring to the homologation joker system or long-term opportunity".


Photo Credits: Hyundai

Post a Comment

Previous Post Next Post