ANDREAS MIKKELSEN RETURNS TO HYUNDAI MOTORSPORT’S LINE-UP FOR NEXT WEEK’S XION RALLY ARGENTINA (25 – 28 APRIL) AFTER MISSING LAST MONTH’S PREVIOUS WRC ROUND IN CORSICA.
The Norwegian was axed from the squad for the asphalt Corsica Linea – Tour de Corse as Hyundai preferred sealed surface experts Dani Sordo and Sébastien Loeb alongside lead driver Thierry Neuville in its i20 World Rally Cars.
Mikkelsen, who had been expected to contest all 14 rounds of the 2019 season, returns for the tough gravel road encounter in place of Loeb and alongside championship leader Neuville and Sordo.
There are no surprises elsewhere among the headline World Rally Car category. Reigning champion Sébastien Ogier will hope for more from his Citroën C3 than in Corsica and he is partnered by Esapekka Lappi in the French squad.
Elfyn Evans aims to put his last stage Corsica disappointment behind him in M-Sport Ford’s Fiesta and the Welshman is joined by Teemu Suninen. Toyota Gazoo Racing fields its regular trio of Ott Tänak, Kris Meeke and Jari-Matti Latvala.
In WRC 2 Pro, Mads Østberg returns for his second outing of the year in a C3 R5. He faces opposition from Gus Greensmith’s Fiesta and young Bolivian Marco Bulacia, who has been nominated in a Fabia by Skoda Motorsport.
Unsurprisingly, the WRC 2 entry is dominated by drivers from the Americas. Mexico’s Benito Guerra, driving a Fabia, is joined by Chile’s Heller brothers, Pedro and Alberto, in Fiestas. Brazilian Paulo Nobre also drives a Fabia.
Japan’s Takamoto Katsuta and Pole Kajetan Kajetanowicz complete the support category starters.
The 27-car entry features seven national competitors, who are permitted to start within the main field as their cars comply with Argentina’s own homologation procedures.