Jari Huttunen crowned 2020 WRC 3 champion with Hyundai i20 R5

Jari Huttunen crowned 2020 WRC 3 champion with Hyundai i20 R5

06.12.2020: • The Finnish crew Jari Huttunen and Mikko Lukka has been crowned WRC 3 champions* with a third-place podium finish in the final event of the 2020 FIA World Rally Championship season, Rally Monza • The pair demonstrated pace and consistency in


•    The Finnish crew Jari Huttunen and Mikko Lukka has been crowned WRC 3 champions* with a third-place podium finish in the final event of the 2020 FIA World Rally Championship season, Rally Monza

 

•    The pair demonstrated pace and consistency in four events this year, and claimed WRC 3 class wins at Rally Sweden and Rally Italia Sardegna with their Hyundai i20 R5


•    Supported by Hyundai Poland for the majority of the season, the crew also won the Polish national rally championship and netted class podiums from events across Europe.



 *subject to the official publication of the results by the FIA

 



In a remarkable end to a rallying year with the Hyundai i20 R5, Jari Huttunen has been crowned the 2020 FIA WRC 3 drivers’ champion*.
 


Heading into the final event of the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC) season, Rally Monza, Huttunen and co-driver Mikko Lukka trailed the lead of the WRC 3 category by just two points. Despite tricky wintry conditions, the Finnish crew performed consistently to come home in third place and claim the WRC 3 crown.   
 


The pair’s journey to the title started in the best possible way with a class win in Rally Sweden. Huttunen and Lukka were the highest-placed R5 crew and finished in tenth overall in February’s event.
 


This form continued when the WRC season resumed with Rally Estonia, where they finished second in an i20 R5 adorned in the colours of Hyundai Poland Racing. This marked a partnership between the driver and the Polish subsidiary that would go on to win the Polish national rally championship in dominant fashion.
 


Huttunen and Lukka claimed a second class win of the season at Rally Italia Sardegna in October, where they demonstrated their raw pace, as well as confirming the performance and reliability of the i20 R5. In an event where several rival crews were beset by problems, the Finns not only eclipsed their fellow WRC 3 competitors, but also all of the WRC 2 entrants. They finished in a superb eighth overall and over a minute clear of their nearest challengers.
 


This closed the gap to the championship leaders and put them in prime position to challenge for the title at Rally Monza. In the final event of the season, they secured two WRC 3 stage wins and equalled their season-best finish of eighth overall – once again beating WRC 2 competitors in the classification.
 


The WRC 3 title completes an excellent season for the crew. As well as the title win in Poland, the pair has taken overall podiums in national events in the Czech Republic and Italy – including a win at Rally Due Valli. Huttunen and Lukka also boast an impressive record of finishing on the class podium in every single event contested with the i20 R5 this year.
 


Huttunen said:
“It is an amazing feeling to win the WRC 3 drivers’ title. I have to thank my team, our sponsors and everyone who was helping me. It has been incredible to drive the i20 R5 this season and we have had an almost perfect year. I really can’t say more, I am lost for words.”
 


Hyundai Motorsport Customer Racing Operations Leader Andrew Johns said: “It is easy to overuse words like ‘remarkable’, but Jari Huttunen’s 2020 season has been exactly that. He has taken podiums every time he has started a rally with the i20 R5 this year, and this pace and consistency has been rightfully rewarded.



They have clearly been one of the strongest crews throughout the season. Not only have they beaten their rivals in other privateer WRC 3 teams, but have also shown the pace to compete with crews contesting WRC 2. It was fantastic to have Jari, Mikko and the Hyundai Poland Racing team celebrating on the podium at the final event. The WRC 3 title is the perfect testament to their incredible achievements this year.”
 



*subject to the official publication of the results by the FIA





Thomas Villette -  photos Hyundai

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06.12.2020 / MaP

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