M-Sport WRC team says it would be "crazy" to drop Evans or Suninen

M-Sport Ford World Rally Championship team boss Malcolm Wilson feels it would be "crazy" to let Elfyn Evans or Teemu Suninen go, despite his pursuit of Ott Tanak for 2020

M-Sport WRC team says it would be "crazy" to drop Evans or Suninen

Evans and Suninen have been M-Sport's main line-up this year after Sebastien Ogier's exit for Citroen, though Evans will end up missing three WRC rounds due to a back injury sustained on the non-championship Rally Estonia.

Wilson has not given up on enticing championship leader Tanak back from Toyota, which is widely expected to re-sign him, but said whatever happened with that pursuit he intended to also keep Evans and Suninen.

Both are drivers M-Sport has nurtured into leading WRC roles through multiple programmes in other categories and satellite entries.

"Elfyn and Teemu will form part of the team, for sure," Wilson told Autosport.

"We've made big investments in both of them so it would be crazy to let someone else get that benefit.

"If Ott's not here the intention would be that they both form part of the team moving forward."

Evans was fourth in the championship prior to his injury, and still held that spot before he was jumped on Rally Germany by Toyota's Kris Meeke and Andreas Mikkelsen.

He will miss the next round in Turkey too before returning for Rally GB - which he won in 2017 - in October.

When asked about his future and if he was in talks with M-Sport for next year, Evans told Autosport: "Of course, it's natural. Nothing is sorted at the minute. It's an open book."

He admitted that missing part of the season at a time when the driver market was being settled was not ideal.

"You never know when it comes to these sort of things," said Evans.

"Obviously you like to hope people haven't forgotten about you, and the performances that we put in at the start of the year.

"There's no time like the present. People do forget pretty naturally when things go on and different people take the limelight at different stages, so who knows.

"When you haven't got a piece of paper with your name on it I guess it is important to be out there.

"But I guess the only thing we can do is focus on doing everything we can to be back rather than dwell on the fact that we aren't."

Win a ride in Colin McRae's Subaru driven by Sir Chris Hoy! Click here

shares
comments
Makinen plays down WRC rumours Hyundai's Sordo could move to Toyota

Previous article

Makinen plays down WRC rumours Hyundai's Sordo could move to Toyota

Next article

Hayden Paddon gets more M-Sport World Rally Championship chances

Hayden Paddon gets more M-Sport World Rally Championship chances
Load comments
The steely determination behind the WRC’s Solberg 2.0 Plus

The steely determination behind the WRC’s Solberg 2.0

Two decades after Petter Solberg emerged as a World Rally Championship winner, his son Oliver is ready to take the WRC by storm. Having secured a part-time WRC factory drive for Hyundai in 2022, he's raring to repay the marque's faith in him and follow in his 2003 champion father's footsteps

WRC
Oct 14, 2021
Analysing the key moves in WRC’s 2022 silly season Plus

Analysing the key moves in WRC’s 2022 silly season

The World Rally Championship will step into a new hybrid era in 2022, but the car changes haven't been the only excitement that has built within the paddock. WRC's 'silly season' kicked off in a big way and all the key driver moves for 2022 - of which there are many - look set to shake things up

WRC
Oct 13, 2021
How joining Finland’s exclusive club was Evans' true WRC coming-of-age Plus

How joining Finland’s exclusive club was Evans' true WRC coming-of-age

By his own admission, the fifth World Rally Championship victory of Elfyn Evans' career in Finland last weekend was the drive of his life. Winning five stages in a row and soaking up huge pressure from the Hyundais on the fastest gravel stages around, the Welshman put in a faultless showing that proved what he is truly made of

WRC
Oct 4, 2021
Does Neuville have a point with his Rally1 rant? Plus

Does Neuville have a point with his Rally1 rant?

OPINION: Thierry Neuville's diatribe against the upcoming Rally1-spec machines that will usher in the World Rally Championship's new hybrid era was remarkable in an era where drivers are usually reticent to air their views in public. But are the Belgian's concerns about speed, safety and cost entirely valid?

WRC
Sep 16, 2021
How the WRC's new flying Finn reached new heights in the Greek mountains Plus

How the WRC's new flying Finn reached new heights in the Greek mountains

After Kalle Rovanpera’s historic feat at Rally Estonia, the Finn scaled new heights at the Rally of the Gods with a commanding victory. And this time Toyota’s young star demonstrated why the future is bright with his devastating speed and consistency at the Acropolis Rally

WRC
Sep 13, 2021
The WRC drivers that came of age at the Acropolis Rally Plus

The WRC drivers that came of age at the Acropolis Rally

Five drivers have won first time out at the Rally Acropolis, transcending the tough dirt and gravel Greek roads to cement a place in rallying folklore. Here are three of the first-time winners' tales

WRC
Sep 9, 2021
Understanding Suninen’s sudden WRC exit gamble Plus

Understanding Suninen’s sudden WRC exit gamble

From being considered a likely contender to drive the next-generation M-Sport Ford Puma in 2022, Teemu Suninen's abrupt exit has created plenty of questions. The Finn's bid to become his country's next World Rally Championship winner won't be furthered by being sidelined, but there may be reason behind the decision

WRC
Sep 2, 2021
Could Spa’s cameo offer the WRC a new avenue to exploit? Plus

Could Spa’s cameo offer the WRC a new avenue to exploit?

OPINION: The Ypres Rally featured a cameo from the Spa-Francorchamps circuit in its final stage, giving WRC teams the chance to experience its iconic corners in rallying machinery. It proved to be an engaging addition to the rally, and could perhaps serve as an example for other events to visit famous circuits

WRC
Aug 24, 2021