MOTORSPORT NEWS Rally

EVANS JOINS FORCES WITH MARTIN

ELFYN EVANS IS EXPECTED TO APPEAR ON THE ENTRY LIST FOR NEXT MONTH’S SEASON-OPENING RALLYE MONTE-CARLO (24 – 27 JANUARY) ALONGSIDE NEW CO-DRIVER SCOTT MARTIN. Evans has been partnered by Dan Barritt since 2013, apart from a break in 2016 when Craig Parry took over co-driving duties.

However, it was confirmed earlier today that Barritt will return to the side of Toyota’s young Japanese driver, Takamoto Katsuta, for a 13-round WRC 2 programme.

With Craig Breen appearing to have missed out on a full-time 2019 seat in the closed season game of musical chairs, co-driver Martin is understood to have pledged his immediate future to Welshman Evans.

M-Sport Ford has not confirmed any details of its 2019 line-up, but it is believed Evans will join Teemu Suninen in Fiesta World Rally Cars for the campaign.

Speculation that Bryan Bouffier could return to drive a Fiesta in Monte-Carlo appears wide of the mark, but it seems increasingly likely that Swede Pontus Tidemand will join the British squad for 2019.

Pontus Tideman

The Swede, winner of the WRC 2 world title in 2017, left Skoda Motorsport at the end of the current season and announced today (Wednesday) that he has also split with Norwegian management team Even Management after six years.

“It’s been a fantastic ride, but now the time has come to explore new exciting opportunities for the future. To one day become world rally champion is my ultimate target and I can’t miss out on any chance that can bring me closer to that goal,” Tidemand posted on social media.

“I’m really looking forward to the 2019 season and can’t wait to share my plans with you all as soon as possible,” said Tidemand, who also confirmed that he will also split with co-driver Jonas Andersson.

Andersson will stay with Even to replace Stig Skjaermoen alongside WRC 2 driver Ole Christian Veiby in a Volkswagen Polo R5. Skjaermoen will join World Rallycross champion Johan Kristoffersson, who will also pilot a Polo in a mixed programme.