The 9th round of the World Rally is run on asphalt: Kalle Rovanpera (Toyota) can already be crowned world champion, Thierry Neuville (Hyundai) plays at home. Max Verstappen’s dad rides a Citroen C3 Rally 2. Here is the updated championship standings and everything you need to know
The WRC World Rally is back in action with the Ypres Rally Belgium 2022: the best drivers in the world, after just a week’s break, are back in the car for the ninth round of the season. The leader of the drivers’ classification Kalle Rovanpera (Toyota) arrives in Belgium with a substantial advantage (94 points) and with a particular combination of results (practically all his direct rivals should retire and he will win the Rally and also conquer a small point in the Power Stage) would graduate world champion. Unlikely, but statistically possible. On asphalt, the Finn, fresh from a 2nd place in the championship and 5 seasonal victories out of 8 Rally disputed, proved to be able to go fast by winning the Rally of Croatia.
Ypres Rally Belgium: Neuville plays at home
The son of art Kalle Rovanpera, however, will have to counter the attacks of the Hyundai i20 N Rally 1 of Thierry Neuville and Ott Tanak. The first, winner of the event in 2021, plays at home and will be pushed by the public, but in his career he has shown that he does not know how to realize good opportunities. The second is fresh from the victory in Finland, serving revenge to a Kalle Rovanpera who had won in Estonia, at his home. Elfyn Evans, aware of the championship situation of the Scandinavian teammate, will try to attack to overtake the two Hyundai in the drivers’ standings, while Ford M-Sport will rely on Craig Breen to enter the top five. Or, who knows, get on the podium. Scrolling through the entry list, it is impossible not to dwell on number 51, the Citroen C3 of category Rally 2 of Jos Verstappen, Max’s father. And in the meantime, for 2023, rumors of a possible debut of Max McRae – son of Alister and grandson by Colin – in the Junior Wrc after the 18-year-old tested a Ford Fiesta Rally 3 in Poland.
Ypres Rally Belgium: the program
After the usual three passes on the shakedown (16.01, 18.01 and 19.31 on Thursday), the Ypres Rally Belgium 2022 officially kicks off on Friday morning at 10.16 with the PS1 Vleteren 1 (11.97 km). The first day of competition includes four timed sections to be repeated twice, with the PS8 (Langemark 2 of 8.95 km) at 5.53 pm, for a total day mileage of 97.02 km. The Rally will be played on Saturday, with 8 other special stages (4 stages to be repeated twice) for 133.22 km of timed sections of the total 281.58 of the race. On Sunday the grand finale with the last 4 stages: the passage on the Power Stage that assigns additional points for the championship standings is set for 1.18 pm.
Ypres Rally Belgium: TV schedules
Sky Sport holds the rights to broadcast live the highlights of the 2022 World Rally. Below is the schedule for the Rally of Belgium.
- 11.00 Dikkebus 1 (14.29 km) on Sky Sport Action (channel 206)
- 16.00 Dikkebus 2 (14.29 km) on Sky Sport Action (channel 206)
- 9.30 Kemmelberg 1 (13.31 km) on Sky Sport Uno (channel 201)
- 13.00 Kemmelberg Wolf Power Stage (13.31 km) su Sky Sport Action (canale 206)
World Rally WRC: championship standings
- K. Rovanpera (Fin-Toyota) 198 pounds
- O.Tanak (East-Hyundai) 104
- T. Neuville (Bel-Hyundai) 103
- E.Evans (Gb-Toyota) 94
- T. Katsuta (Giap-Toyota) 81
- C.Breen (Irl-Ford M-Sport) 64
- E. Lappi (Fin-Toyota) 42
- S.Loeb (From-Ford M-Sport) 35
- S.Ogier (Fra-Toyota) 34
- D.Sordo (Spa-Hyundai) 34