M-SPORT and ERC #ReadyToRally3 in Poland

M-SPORT and ERC #ReadyToRally3 in Poland

14.06.2021: M-Sport Poland is ready to usher in an exciting new era of rallying this week on its home rally and opening round of the 2021 FIA European Rally Championship (ERC), the 77th Rally Poland.

M-Sport Poland is ready to usher in an exciting new era of rallying this week on its home rally and opening round of the 2021 FIA European Rally Championship (ERC), the 77th Rally Poland.

The 2021 FIA ERC sees a totally new ERC Junior class to cater for the all new Rally3 category which M-Sport Poland is the first manufacturer to homologate a car for with the Fiesta Rally3.  

The entry-level four-wheel drive Fiesta Rally3 has had numerous outings at a national level this year, building popularity and awareness while highlighting itself as the perfect next step from a Rally4 car.

Rally Poland marks the start of the first ever international Rally3 category championship with Ken Torn and Kauri Pannas (2020 ERC3 and ERC3 Junior Champions) set to begin their 2021 ERC Junior campaign. This year’s ERC Junior Champion will win a fully funded season in the 2022 FIA Junior WRC Championship thanks to a collaborative effort between M-Sport Poland, Pirelli, Eurosport and FIA. Torn’s ERC Junior effort is part of his prize package for winning the 2020 ERC3 Junior Championship in an EcoBoost-powered Fiesta Rally4.

Also entering ERC Junior on Rally Poland are the winners of the 2021 Junior WRC Croatia Rally, Jon Armstrong and Phil Hall, who are targeting M-Sport Poland’s home event as a preparation and development event for future Junior WRC outings. Armstrong has developed a mature mentality with his driving in 2021, he has impressive four-wheel drive experience with a WRC2 stage win and five top-five stage times on the 2017 edition of Rally Deutschland.

In 2021 the ERC3 Junior Champion will receive three prize drives in the 2022 ERC Junior Championship with M-Sport Poland in a Fiesta Rally3, and if the 2021 ERC3 Champion uses a Ford Fiesta Rally4 the prize drives will be doubled to six.

The competition for the ERC3 Junior Championship will be tough this season with many talented crews entered. One driver in the ERC3 Junior Championship is FIA Junior WRC driver Sami Pajari in a Pirelli equipped Fiesta Rally4. The fast Finn is also using Rally Poland as a preparation event for Rally Estonia, the third round of the 2021 FIA Junior WRC Championship. Pajari chose to use M-Sport Poland thanks to the team’s expertise and experience with Rally Poland’s stages and the Fiesta Rally4 which was designed and developed in Krakow, Poland.

M-Sport Managing Director, Malcolm Wilson OBE, said:

“I’ll be in the Service Park with the team in Mikołajki for the rally as I want to be part of this historic moment for M-Sport, M-Sport Poland and ERC. It’s crucial we work on developing ways to find affordable opportunities for young drivers in rallying and I really think the Fiesta Rally3 can provide those opportunities.

"I can’t wait to see the Fiesta Rally3 make its ERC debut in Poland in the capable hands of Ken and Jon. It's an amazing category and cost effective for four-wheel drive experience which is essential for young drivers looking to progress through the ranks.

"The Fiesta Rally3 doesn’t just cater to junior drivers either which is reflected in the entries as it’s a very capable national level car too. It’s perfect for those who enjoy four-wheel drive rallying, as you can have so much fun in a four-wheel drive car.”

M-Sport Poland Managing Director, Maciej Woda, said:

“This is a hugely exciting opportunity for M-Sport Poland. We finally get to see young drivers taking advantage of the new Ladder of Opportunity from Sami Pajari in the Fiesta Rally4 chasing six prize drives in the 2022 ERC Junior Championship, to Ken Torn starting his first Fiesta Rally3 prize drive.

"To be making history with ERC and starting the first ever international championship for the Rally3 category on our home event is a huge privilege and I cannot wait. We know these roads quite well and the Fiesta Rally3 turned its first wheel in Poland, I guess it’s quite fitting its first FIA Championship outing is on similar roads. In total there are seven Fiesta Rally3 cars entered on Rally Poland with a mixture of local talent and young guns like Ken Torn and Jon Armstrong. I’m really interested to see how the competition pans out between them all and how they go against other entries.

“This rally also marks the start of the ERC3 Junior Championship with Sami Pajari looking to see how he fares against ERC drivers too. There are a total of six Fiesta Rally4 cars entered in the ERC3 Junior class on Poland with some strong competition from other cars which I genuinely cannot wait for.”

Car #41 ERC Junior

“I'm happy that we are finally back in the car ready to start our ERC Junior Championship campaign! I am driving the M-Sport Fiesta Rally3 this year which is four-wheel drive and built by M-Sport Poland.

"I worked with the team to help develop this car and I feel privileged to be making the Fiesta Rally3’s ERC debut on M-Sport Poland’s home rally. I can’t wait for the new challenge and looking forward to what the Polish roads bring us.”

Car #42 ERC Junior

“I’ve been really excited about the Fiesta Rally3 ever since my first test drive this year! I was quite keen to drive the Fiesta Rally3 again this year to be one of the first in the category and enjoy it.

"Rally Poland is amazing, I was there in 2016 for the Fiesta Trophy and got my first international rally category win, I’ve got fond memories from then. Poland has nice roads and will serve as a perfect warm up for me to do my Rally Estonia preparations.

"It’s a good opportunity for me and Phil to develop ourselves, see what the Rally3 category is all about and it’ll be quite cool to be working with M-Sport Poland on their home round.”

Car #63 ERC3 and ERC3 Junior

“It’s a great opportunity for me to get some more experience, which is vital to my development going forward. With Estonia coming next month in Junior WRC it’s a good time to experience more fast gravel roads and also test myself against new competitors all hoping to reach the top the same as me. I’m very excited to have the opportunity and cannot wait to get behind the wheel again.”



Sebastian Scott- photos M-Sport

Permanent-URL: http://www.automobilsport.com/m-sport-erc-ready-to-rally3-poland---224931.html

14.06.2021 / MaP

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