23 WRCs amongst 84 entered teams
The 43rd Rally Catalunya, to be staged from October 5th to 7th, will be the 12th out of 16 scoring rounds for the World Rally Championship and also the sixth and penultimate round of the JWRC.
The event will be counting on a total
of 84 entered teams. This large number of participants is with no doubt good proof of the large interest and attractiveness of the Spanish round of the World Championship.
The large variety of entered vehicles, including 23 World Rally Cars, 32 Group A with front-wheel drive (Super 1600 and 2.0 litres) and 29 Group N/A cars, will be driven by the currently best drivers who will have to cover a highly selective route, starting and arriving on the Promenade of the city of Salou and having as its nerve centre at the PortAventura theme park.
The six official teams registered in the manufacturers' World Championship head the list of drivers entered and accepted by RACC Motor Sport, organiser of the 2007 RallyRACC.
CitroŽn Total WRT will thus be in Catalunya with its usual drivers, Frenchman and three-times World Champion Sebastien Loeb
, and Spanish RACC driver Daniel Sordo, both at the wheel of a C4 WRC. BP Ford WRT, champion and current leader of the manufacturers' and drivers' championship, will be represented by Finnish driver Marcus GrŲnholm and his fellow citizen Mikko Hirvonen, both with the 2007 version of the Ford Focus RS WRC.
A priori, these two teams are the main favourites for the final victory but we should not forget the official Subaru team and their three drivers, Petter Solberg from Norway, Chris Atkinson from Australia and RACC driver Xevi Pons.
Moreover, the OMV Kronos CitroŽn WRT team will be attending the rally with Austrian Manfred Stohl and Belgian FranÁois Duval, with the latter being highly motivated after his second place achieved at Rally Germany. Both drivers will be sitting behind the wheel of an Xsara WRC.
The Stobart VK M-Sport team, with Finn Jari-Matti Latvala and Norwegian Henning Solberg, along with Munchi's Ford WRT team drivers Luis Pťrez Companc and Federico Villagra from Argentina, will all be driving a Ford Focus RS WRC 2006.
As regards the WRC privateers, there are several Ford Focus cars supported by the official team, as well as the Skoda Fabia WRC of the Czech Rally Team represented by Czech driver Jan Kopecky, who has always been very efficient on the Spanish asphalt.
The FIA Junior Rally Championship, having its penultimate round of the year in Catalunya with everything yet to be decided, will also count on a large representation. A total of 20 teams have entered, including the Suzuki Swift S1600 of Estonian driver Urmo Aava and Swedish driver Per-Gunnar Andersson, currently in the top two positions of the standings. The Renault Clio R3 of Patrik Sandell, on provisional third position and current champion of the series, as well as the Suzuki Swift S1600 of Estonian Jaan MŲlder and the CitroŽn C2 S1600 of Czech Martin Prokop, will also be there.
In addition to Dani Sordo and Xevi Pons previously mentioned, the list of Spanish drivers having announced their participation in the 43rd Rally Catalunya is large and significant.
They make up the 25 remaining entrants, and include well-known names such as former JWRC champion and current Spanish Champion Dani Solŗ (Honda Civic Type R); Manuel Rueda (Renault Clio R3); the current Catalan Champion, Jordi Zurita (Peugeot 307 WRC); or Yeray Lemes (CitroŽn C2 S1600), who will be taking part as a wild card in the Junior class.
There will also be participants at the wheel of various models: Subaru Impreza (Manuel Cůrdoba, Albert Orriols), Mitsubishi Lancer (Joan Font, Alvaro MuŮiz, Pedro Font, Francisco Javier Paz, Ramon Montlleů); Renault Clio (Sergio Pťrez); Ford Fiesta (Heriberto Godoy) and Fiat Punto (Manuel Redondo), among others.
Source Rally Catalunya