HYUNDAI CLOSE TO 2015 DECISION

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HYUNDAI CLOSE TO 2015 DECISION

HYUNDAI hopes to finalise the structure of its 2015 FIA World Rally Championship campaign this month and will announce its driver line-up shortly after.

The main two-car Hyundai Shell World Rally Team will return for a second season with Thierry Neuville already confirmed in one of the i20 World Rally Cars.

But team boss Michel Nandan said a decision about the second driver would come only after the Korean manufacturer had agreed whether or not to continue with its second-string Motorsport N team that debuted at Rally de Portugal.

“There is still no decision about next year’s drivers because we are still linked to the fact that if we run two or three cars then the driver line-ups can be different,” he said.

“Hyundai Motorsport N is not guaranteed for next year. This issue is still pending and it depends on budgets.

“We are discussing with Korea and our sponsors and I hope we can sort it out this month and then we can announce which drivers we will have next year. We have to wait a bit.”

Hyundai’s long list of event and test drivers, Australian Chris Atkinson, plus Hayden Paddon, Juho Hanninen, Dani Sordo and Bryan Bouffier, are all thought to be under consideration for more appearances next year.

Atkinson and Paddon competed alongside Neuville at Coates Hire Rally Australia last month.

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Chris Nixon

Chris Nixon is Media Manager for Kennards Hire Rally Australia.