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World Rally Championship 2023 Season Preview - News

The World Rally Championship (WRC) is set to kick off its 2023 season this Thursday (19th January), and fans of the high-speed, adrenaline pumping motorsport event are gearing up for another exciting year of rallying.

Join TrackDays.co.uk as we look back at how last season finished, before previewing the season opener at the famous Rallye Monte Carlo.

Last season was a historical one for the fact that the WRC crowned its youngest championship winner in the form of 22-year-old, Kalle Rovanperä.

Driving for Toyota Gazoo Racing World Rally Team, Rovanperä clinched the title in New Zealand, a day after his 22nd birthday to break the record previously held by racing legend, Colin McRae by five years. Was the Finn's astounding victory a flash in the pan or does it represent a return to the top of the WRC tree for Finnish drivers?

The championship victory also maintained the Toyota's winning pedigree in the sport, with Rovanperä becoming the eighth driver for the stable to win the title, and their fourth in as many years.

However, while the victory of Rovanperä took all the headlines, during the second half of the season in 2022, Hyundai's i20 N Rally1 team was the dominant force who took everyone's breath away.

Recently, driver Thierry Neuville has predicted that Hyundai's dominance since Estonia in 2022 means they're in a perfect position to make the 2023 season extremely competitive and that the championship will likely go down to the wire.

As we look ahead to the 2023 season, the first race marked on the calendar is the famous Rallye Monte Carlo. This event is one of the most iconic and challenging races on the WRC schedule, as drivers and teams must navigate the winding mountain roads of the French Riviera. The rally is known for its unpredictable weather conditions, which can change rapidly and make for a challenging and exciting race in the French Alps.

2022 saw the FIA introduce a raft of regulations, including ones focused on promoting hybrid systems within the cars. While they have refrained from many tweaks for the 2023 season, they have looked at the amount of testing a team can do.

Whereas in 2022 teams were allowed one test day for each European round of the championship, now teams are only granted a maximum of 21 days across the entire season, with individual drivers capped at only 7.

This represents a significant decline in the days available for each time but does offer them more flexibility to test when and where they feel is appropriate.

While the start of the 2023 WRC season is just a few days away, fans across the globe are eagerly anticipating the action that is to come.

Kickstart the WRC rally season in style by taking up the opportunity to purchase one of our Rally Driving Experiences through dates on our regularly updated Rally Driving Calendar or purchase of our open Gift Vouchers, and take your first steps to living your rally dreams.

IMAGE CREDIT: Autosport
World Rally Championship 2023 Season Preview
16 January 2023
Trackdays

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