Competive line-up for FIA Junior WRC Championship

Competive line-up for FIA Junior WRC Championship

The 2023 FIA Junior WRC Championship has accepted nine entries for the season opening round on Rally Sweden representing a diverse selection of rallying’s next generation of superstars. 


The nine crews looking to be the next star of the FIA World Rally Championship represent nine different countries across Europe, South America and Africa. This year’s entrants will be vying for the biggest prize in rallying; Four fully-funded WRC2 prize drives in an Ecoboost-powered M-Sport Ford Fiesta Rally2, including 200 Pirelli tyres, free registration for WRC 2 in 2024 and a pre event test for each round. 


The challenge ahead of 2023’s WRC youngsters is a five-round calendar starting on the snow and ice of Rally Sweden and goes on to sample every surface represented on the WRC calendar: snow, ice, asphalt and a variety of gravel surfaces.


With famous former drivers and champions including the likes of Sebastien Loeb, Sebastien Ogier, Dani Sordo, Elfyn Evans, Pierre-Louis Loubet and Sami Pajari, the following drivers are hoping to put their names in the history books:


William Creighton / Liam Regan 
Creighton is heading into his third season of Junior WRC in 2023. His debut season saw him breakthrough to the international stage, with rapid improvement from battling for top-five times to ending the season with a host of Wolf Stage Win Points to his name. 2022 Saw Creighton continue to improve on his impressive form, claiming two podium positions and yet more Wolf Stage Win Points. For 2023 his sights are set firmly on event wins and challenging for the championship. 


Gregoire Munster / Louis Louka
Gregoire Munster is a surprise entry to the 2023 FIA Junior WRC Championship, the Luxembourg-based driver claimed his maiden WRC2 event victory on Rally Japan in 2022. Munster will be one to watch and a driver most will be comparing themselves to thanks to his long list of experience and achievements in WRC2 and the European Rally Championship.


Tom Rensonnet / Loïc Dumont
Tom Rensonnet's journey into the world of rallying began with just a single 10 Euro note. From a complete novice with no rally experience, he’s now one of the up-and-coming stars competing in this year's FIA Junior WRC.
 

Laurent Pellier / Marine Pelamourgues 
Laurent Pellier is a previous event winner in a Junior WRC thanks to a one-off entry to Tour de Corse in 2016. His career has taken many twists and turns since then, but he appears to be rebuilding himself after taking the 2022 Junior ERC title and a free ticket to the 2023 Junior WRC.


Eamonn Kelly / Conor Mohan 
Eamonn Kelly is a following in the footsteps of his fellow compatriot William Creighton. The two drivers have both won the Junior British Rally Championship and Kelly heads to Junior WRC fresh off the back of his title success in the same fashion as Creighton in 2021. Proving himself on both gravel and asphalt, Kelly won the prestigious Billy Coleman Award, which is presented by Motorsport Ireland each year to a promising young driver. 
 

Diego Dominguez / Rogelio Peñate
Diego Dominguez is the first Paraguayan and South American driver to enter Junior WRC since Fabrizio Zaldivar who last competed in the 2020 FIA Junior WRC Championship. Dominguez has already a taste the WRC in Rally3 machinery, with a highlight coming by way of a WRC3 category win on Acropolis Rally Greece, setting competitive times against the Junior WRC field.  


Roberto Blach / Mauro Barreiro
Roberto Blach will make his Junior WRC debut on Rally Sweden, accompanied by 2019 Junior WRC Co-Driver’s Champion, Mauro Barreiro. The young Spaniard is a member of the 2023 Rallye Team Spain, the same team that 2019 champion Jan Solans was a member of. Blach’s experience is comprehensive in top-level front wheel drive machinery but limited to only Spain and Portugal. Rally Sweden will be Blach’s first event outside of his native Spain and also Portugal.


Hamza Anwar / Adnan Din
Hamza Anwar is one of Kenya’s latest promising young talents. He made his WRC debut on Safari Rally Kenya in 2021, steering his Fiesta Rally3 through one of the WRC’s most demanding rallies to second in the Rally3 category. Anwar has 29 rally starts to his name and will be experiencing European rallying for the first time.


Raul Hernandez / Rodrigo Sanjuan
Raul Hernandez is another Spanish hot shot, at the young age of just 21. Don’t let Hernandez’s age fool you though, the Spaniard has been competing on competitive stage rallies since he was 16 years old, on a variety of surfaces. Given his young age and relatively comprehensive experience, there are many eyes upon the promising talent, and he is being supported and advised by 2019 FIA Junior WRC Champion, Jan Solans.


Maciej Woda, FIA Junior WRC Championship Manager, said: “This number of entries for the start of the season in Junior WRC speaks volumes about the success and growing popularity of the championship and Fiesta Rally3. With the biggest prize package in rallying for the 2023 champion, FIA Junior WRC is the perfect steppingstone for any driver wishing to establish themselves in the FIA World Rally Championship. With our key partners, Pirelli and Wolf Lubricants all heavily engaged in rally activities throughout every level of the sport, FIA Junior WRC is the most accessible championship that gives a great introduction to all aspects of the WRC. We have a very impressive line-up of entries for the opening round of the season in Sweden. With so many new entries, I am really excited about the championship fight ahead of us this year and it is going to be exciting and unpredictable!”


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