FIA World Rally Championship (WRC)
WRC finale: Volkswagen dominates Rally Great Britain
Volkswagen signed off with another highlight at the end of a sensational season in the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC): Sébastien Ogier/Julien Ingrassia (F/F) won their ninth WRC round of the year in the Polo R WRC at the Rally Great Britain. Their team-mates Jari-Matti Latvala/Miikka Anttila (FIN/FIN) finished second, while Andreas Mikkelsen/Mikko Markkula (N/FIN) ended the 13th and final round of the 2013 WRC in fifth place in the third World Rally Car from Wolfsburg. The three works duos achieved their best team result of the year, winning 16 of 22 stages and claiming 41 of the 66 top-three spots on offer. Ogier/Ingrassia had already been crowned World Champions* in the Driver and Co-Driver competition after the Rally France. Together with team-mates Jari-Matti Latvala/Miikka Anttila, they then presented Volkswagen with the Manufacturers’ title in Spain.
Formula 3 Grand Prix in Macau
Impressive team performance from sextet “powered by Volkswagen”
Five Volkswagen drivers in the top ten, including last year’s winner António Félix da Costa (P) on the podium in second place. While victory at the Formula 3 Grand Prix in Macau went to Britain’s Alex Lynn, the six drivers racing for the Volkswagen-assisted Carlin team produced a fine all-round team performance. Jordan King (GB) was the best-placed rookie, crossing the line fifth at the street race in the former Portuguese colony, which is regarded as the “unofficial Formula 3 World Championship”. The youngster also clocked the fastest lap of the race. Jazeman Jaafar (MAL), Carlos Sainz jr. (E) and Nicolas Latifi (CDN) followed in sixth, seventh and ninth respectively. Harry Tincknell (GB), who started from the back of the field, produced an impressive comeback to finish 14th.
Scirocco R China Masters Challenge
Huisman wins invitational race in the gambling paradise of Macau
Old school reunion in Macau. Former Formula 1 drivers, Le Mans champions, touring car stars and other motorsport heroes from all corners of the globe descended on the former Portuguese colony for a one-off invitational race. They took to the starting grid in cars from the Chinese Volkswagen Scirocco R Cup to commemorate the 60th running of the Macau Grand Prix on the street course. The winner: touring car driver Duncan Huisman (NL). Huisman took the lead at the start and drove his car home unhindered to take victory. Ex-Formula 1 driver and DTM Champion Nicola Larini (I) crossed the line in second place, followed by the two Brits, Mike Conway and Tim Harvey, and ex-Formula 1 driver David Brabham (AUS). The drivers who finished third and second in the overall standings of this year’s Volkswagen Scirocco R Cup China, Thomas Fjordbach (DK) and Andrea Reggiani (I), finished sixth and seventh respectively. Ni Amorim (P) came home eighth ahead of Julian Bailey (GB). Keisuke Kunimoto (J), F3 Macau winner in 2008, completed the top ten ahead of the reigning Volkswagen Scirocco R Cup China champion Bao Jin Long (CN).
South African Rally Championship
Kuun narrowly misses out on podium at season finale
Enzo Kuun (ZA) and co-driver Douglas Judd (ZA) finished fourth at the “Garden Route Rally” in South Africa. Mark Cronje (Ford) won the final rally of the season, having already sealed overall victory ahead of the “Garden Route”. Kuun/Judd were 2:34.7 minutes behind Cronje in their Polo S2000 after six of the twelve special stages when the rally was brought to a premature end due to poor weather. The results of the other Volkswagen drivers: Gugu Zulu/Carl Peskin (ZA/ZA) finished sixth, while Hergen Fekken/Pierre Arries (ZA/ZA) were ninth. It was a disappointing rally for Henk Lategan/Barry White (ZA/ZA), however. The duo was forced to retire after just one special stage. The “Garden Route Rally” was Lategan’s last outing in the South African Rally Championship. The South African has received a wildcard from the FIA’s “Young Driver Excellence Academy” for next year, and will try his hand on the international scene.
FIA World Rally Championship (WRC)
Volkswagen Motorsport is “Motorsport Team of the Year”
Volkswagen was named “Motorsport Team of the Year” at the “Professional MotorSport World Expo Awards 2013” in Cologne. “Winning the championship in its first season was very impressive – and also very difficult,” explained jury member Tino Belli. “We would like to thank the jury for their decision,” said Volkswagen Motorsport Director Jost Capito. “To be recognised as ‘Motorsport Team of the Year’ is another highlight in a fantastic debut season in the World Rally Championship. They say a team is only ever as good as its weakest member, and that is particularly true at such a high level as this. As such, we are very proud that we do not have any weak links in our team. Every single employee at Volkswagen Motorsport helped us to become ‘Motorsport Team of the Year’ for the first time, just as they all contributed to us winning the titles in the World Championship*.”
* Subject to the official publication of the results by the FIA.