Seventeen World Rally Cars set for Finnish Grand Prix
Bumper 88-car entry an increase on 2014 numbers
Eighty-eight crews are on the entry list for the upcoming Neste Oil Rally Finland, including 17 in the headline World Rally Car category.
The rally, round eight of the FIA World Rally Championship, will run from the city of Jyväskylä from July 30 - August 2.
The number of cars is up by 11 on the 2014 total and entries are headed by the manufacturer teams. Double world champion Sébastien Ogier, Flying Finn Jari-Matti Latvala – last year’s Finland winner – and Andreas Mikkelsen are entered in a trio of factory Volkswagen Polo R WRCs.
Kris Meeke, Mads Østberg and Khalid Al Qassimi front the Citroën assault in their DS 3 WRCs, while Thierry Neuville, Dani Sordo and Hayden Paddon will rely on Hyundai power. The hopes of the Ford-powered M-Sport squad ride with Elfyn Evans and Ott Tänak.
Other drivers competing in M-Sport-built Fiesta RS WRCs include ex-Formula One racer Robert Kubica, Martin Prokop, Henning Solberg, Lorenzo Bertelli and Finland’s former European champion Juho Hänninen. Russian Alexey Lukyanuk will also be behind the wheel of a Fiesta RS as he makes his World Rally Car debut.
The WRC 2 class has attracted 23 entries including front-running Finns Jari Ketomaa and Esapekka Lappi, Estonia’s reigning Finnish champion Karl Kruuda plus Craig Breen, Eyvind Brynildsen, Eric Camilli, Yuriy Protasov and Pontus Tidemand.
A total of 12 crews will chase Junior WRC success, with promising Finns Henri Haapamäki and AKK Sports’ latest Future Rally Star of Finland Jari Huttunen among the favourites for success. A former AKK Future Star, Teemu Suninen, joins Italians Damiano De Tommaso and Fabio Andolfi in the WRC 3 class.
Completing a clean sweep of WRC support classes are the 10 entries in the Drive DMACK Fiesta Trophy - including Max Vatanen, son of 1981 world rally champion Ari.
Clerk of the course Kai Tarkiainen said: “We are very pleased the appeal of Neste Oil Rally Finland remains strong for competitors from around the world. But while quantity is important, we are thrilled to have attracted so many top names from the sport, plus some very exciting talents from Finland looking to make a name for themselves on the world stage.”
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