VW chooses Abbring, Wiegand for Rally GB
|By David Evans||Wednesday, October 19th 2011, 09:54 GMT|
Volkswagen has chosen Kevin Abbring and Sepp Wiegand for its entry for next month's Rally GB with a pair of Skoda Fabia S2000s.
The German firm's decision not to test any British drivers had been telegraphed after motorsport director Kris Nissen admitted he could see nobody from Britain worthy of a VW run on their home round of the World Rally Championship.
Dutch FIA Institute Academy member Abbring, 22, is acknowledged as one of the sport's fastest young drivers, having won his class while driving a Citroen DS3 R3 in the French Gravel Championship this season.
Twenty-year-old Wiegand has made a similarly impressive start to a rally career which only began following a switch from motocross last year.
The German driver has taken several class wins in his home series before moving up to the WRC Academy, for Germany and France - he finished fourth in the Fiesta-based championship last time out in Alsace.
Nissen said: "The Wales Rally Great Britain is one of the most challenging events in the World Rally Championship. The fast gravel tracks, narrow forest trails and the unpredictable weather have made it a classic. Therefore, it is a must for our team to experience this rally in competitive conditions.
"At the same time we're giving two young drivers the opportunity to get to know our team and to show their skills. Sepp Wiegand is very young but has already caused a sensation on numerous occasions. Kevin Abbring has a little more international experience but also has to adjust to a new car and a new environment. Both teams have our full support."
VW has tested local drivers on three WRC rounds earlier this year, taking a Joonas Lindroos in Finland, Christian Riedemann in Germany and Yeray Lemes in Spain this week.