With everything still to play for, there’s an exciting weekend ahead at RACC Rally de España as Ford Fiesta S2000 crews vie for championship victory at the final Super 2000 World Rally Championship (S-WRC) round of the season.
Only three points split Ott Tänak and current championship leader Juho Hänninen, with Czech driver Martin Prokop currently sitting in third, just 14 points adrift of fellow Fiesta S2000 driver Tänak. With all three still in with a chance of taking the championship crown, it looks set to go down to the wire.
On impressive form throughout his debut season, having finished on the podium five times, Tänak is the only S-WRC competitor to have racked up three victories throughout the year, and as he turns 24 over the weekend, he will be hoping to celebrate the milestone in style; “Spain will be a new event for me so that will be difficult, but I am going there to do my best and I really want to win. We still have a lot to learn on asphalt but it is getting better all the time. I hope we can do enough to win next week but I know it will be difficult.”
His rival, former J-WRC champion Prokop is one of the most experienced drivers competing in the series, and has been in the running for a top three finish throughout most of the season. He said;
“It is going to be very difficult for me to win the championship now. There is a small chance I could still win but something would need to happen to both Ott and Juha, and I don’t think that is very likely as they’ve been really strong on the last few rallies.
He added; “I’m feeling very similar to how I felt last year – it went down to the last couple of events and it was very close. For sure I will try my best and will push from the start, I have nothing to lose.”
If, by some unfortunate event, all of the top three encountered major issues, reigning Portuguese Rally Champion Bernardo Sousa will be looking to improve upon his current place of fourth in the championship standings. The 24-year-old is 24 points adrift of third place and will be relying on mishaps for the top three in order to end this year’s championship with a podium position.
Bernardo Sousa said: “I’ve had a good year in the S-WRC, I feel I’ve improved since last year and it was great to get the win we had in Jordan. The top three are quite far ahead now and it would not be possible for me to move any further up the standings unless I win in Spain. Of course I always aim for a victory going into a rally but I will also try to enjoy myself and set some fast stage times ahead of going to Switzerland.”