WRC – 2020 RALLY MONTE-CARLO PREVIEW

Winter weather can make for unpredictable conditions on the asphalt roads in the French Alps. As a result, the drivers can face everything from dry asphalt to snow and ice, sometimes within a single stage, making their tyre choice particularly difficult and often a compromise. It also promises to be especially exciting this year as many of the world’s top drivers will be tackling this notorious challenge while getting familiar with new machinery.

Ott Tänak takes his newly claimed World Champion title to Hyundai, teaming up with Thierry Neuville, a close championship rival over the last few seasons. Sébastien Loeb, a seven-time winner of the event, begins his second part-time campaign in the i20 Coupe WRC. Toyota enters 2020 with an entirely refreshed line-up led by six-time champion Sébastien Ogier. Alongside the Frenchman will be Elfyn Evans and 19-year-old 2019 FIA WRC 2 Pro champion Kalle Rovanperä, who makes his World Rally Car debut as the youngest ever full-time factory driver. Two other  Finnish drivers are at M-Sport, with Esapekka Lappi joining Teemu Suninen, while Gus Greensmith contests the first of nine planned outings in a third Fiesta WRC. Japanese driver Takamoto Katsuta also begins an expanded campaign in an additional Toyota Yaris WRC.

Hyundai, M-Sport and PH Sport are the early representatives of this class for professional teams with R5 cars with Nicolay Gryazin and Ole Christian Veiby, Adrien Fourmaux, and Mads Østberg driving for those respective teams. The FIA WRC 3 category for privateer R5 entries features 13 drivers on the opening round. Rallye Monte-Carlo is also the first round of the FIA RGT Cup.

THE 2020 ROUTE

The rally returns to Monaco for the opening ceremony and start of this year’s event, which will take place in the iconic harbour area on Thursday afternoon. The crews will immediately face two late-night stages in darkness, the first of which (Malijai – Puimichel) will be featured for the first time since 1994. Another new test – Saint-Clément-sur-Durance – Freissinières – is included in a loop of three stages around Gap, each run twice on Friday, the longest day of the rally. The rest of the route is identical to 2019. On Saturday, a double loop will take the crews around Gap before a final service in the French city and the drive back to Monaco. Sunday features two runs each over the legendary Col de Turini test and the La Cabanette-Col de Braus stage, the latter hosting the rally’s closing Power Stage.

MEDIA ACCREDITATION

Media accreditation must be collected personally by accredited Pass Holders at the Accreditation Desk located at the Media Center in the Gap Service Park (Centre Omnisport COSEC, Avenue de Traunstein, 05000 Gap).

The opening hours are:

Monday 20 January: 14:00 – 18:00 hrs

Tuesday 21 January: 09:00 – 20:30 hrs

Wednesday 22 January: 09:00 – 21:00 hrs

Thursday 23 January: 09:00 – 21:00 hrs

2020 WRC RALLYE MONTE-CARLO TIMETABLE AND MEDIA OPPORTUNITIES

Wednesday 22 January

Mandatory media safety briefing, Photographers’ Room, Media Center          12:00 hrs

Autograph signing session, Gap Service Park                                                            15:00 – 15:30 hrs

Mandatory Shakedown for P1/P2/P3 drivers, Route de la Garde, Gap              16:00 – 18:00 hrs

Shakedown (others), Route de la Garde, Gap                                                           18:00 – 20:00 hrs

‘Meet the Crews’ Top 3 Shakedown, Gap Service Park                                           18:30 hrs

FIA Press Conference, Press Room, Media Centre, Gap Service Park                  19:00 hrs

Starting with P2 & P3 drivers (10’)

Followed by P1 drivers (10’)

Thursday 23 January

Ind. media opportunities with WRC teams & drivers, La Rascasse, Monaco    12:00 – 14:00 hrs

Manufacturer & WRC 2/3 car photo, Technical Zone, Quai Albert 1er, MC      15:00 – 15:15 hrs

– WRC cars: #8 / #17 / #4

– WRC 2/3 cars: #20 / #21 / #23 / #25 / #41

– Grid Formation with the above WRC & WRC 2/3 cars

Official family photo with P1 crews, Quai Albert 1er, Monaco                             15:45 – 16:00 hrs

Ceremonial start, Quai Albert 1er, Monaco                                                              16:00 hrs

Rally start „Monaco – Gap“, Quai Albert 1er, Monaco                                           17:00 hrs

First car arrives for technical / media zone & final service, Gap SP                     23:26 hrs

‘Meet the Crews’ Top 3 Shakedown, Gap Service Park                                           23:45 hrs

Friday 24 January

Start of Section 2 & 3 “Gap – Gap”, Gap Service Park                                             07:45 hrs

First car arrives for regroup, media zone & service, Gap SP                                  12:08 hrs

First car arrives for technical / media zone & final service, Gap SP                     17:29 hrs

‘Meet the Crews’, Gap Service Park                                                                             During the 48’ service

Saturday 25 January

Start of Section 4 & 5 “Gap – Monaco”, Gap SP                                                       08:32 hrs

First car arrives for regroup, media zone & service, Gap SP                                  12:02 hrs

First car arrives for technical / media zone & final service, Gap SP                     16:26 hrs

‘Meet the Crews’, Gap Service Park                                                                             During the 48’ service

Sunday 26 January

Start of Section 6 & 7 “Monaco – Monaco”, Quai Albert 1er, Monaco              06:34 hrs

First car arrives for technical /media zone, Quai Albert 1er, Monaco                13:48 hrs

Rally Finish – Parc Fermé                                                                                                13:58 hrs

Podium Ceremony & Price Giving, Quai Albert 1er, Monaco                                15:00 hrs

FIA Press Conference, Press Room, Media Centre, Quai Albert 1er, MC            16:00 hrs

FIA PRESS CONFERENCE ATTENDANCE

Wednesday 22 January                FIA WRC

                                                           Ott Tänak (EST), Hyundai Shell Mobis World Rally Team

                                                           Sébastien Ogier (FRA), Toyota Gazoo Racing World Rally Team

                                                           Esapekka Lappi (FIN), M-Sport Ford World Rally Team

                                                           Sébastien Loeb (FRA), Hyundai Shell Mobis World Rally Team

                                                           Andrea Adamo (ITA), Team Principal, Hyundai Shell Mobis WRT

                                                           FIA WRC 2

                                                           Adrien Fourmaux (FRA), M-Sport Ford World Rally Team

                                                           Nicolay Gryazin (RUS), Hyundai Motorsport N

                                                           FIA WRC 3

                                                           Yohann Rossel (FRA)

                                                           Umberto Scandola (ITA)

Sunday 26 January                        Winning FIA WRC 3 Championship crew

                                                           Winning FIA WRC 2 Championship crew

                                                           Top three crews in the overall classification

                                                           Representative of the winning manufacturer

MANUFACTURER WRC ENTRIES, 2020 WRC RALLYE MONTE-CARLO

Hyundai Shell Mobis WRT           Ott Tänak / Martin Järveoja (#8)

                                                           Thierry Neuville / Nicolas Gilsoul (#11)

                                                           Sébastien Loeb / Daniel Elena (#9)

Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT          Sébastien Ogier / Julien Ingrassia (#17)

                                                           Elfyn Evans / Scott Martin (#33)

                                                           Kalle Rovanperä / Jonne Halttunen (#69)

M-Sport Ford WRT                        Teemu Suninen / Jarmo Lehtinen (#3)

                                                           Esapekka Lappi / Janne Ferm (#4)

                                                           Gus Greensmith / Elliott Edmondson (#44)

FIA WORLD RALLY CHAMPIONSHIP CLASSIFICATIONS

The 2019 classifications for all the WRC Championships is available on the following link:

https://www.fia.com/events/world-rally-championship/season-2019/standings

Source : Fia