Giandomenico Basso will attempt to make up for the disappointment of losing out on the Intercontinental Rally Challenge drivers title when he contests Rallye International du Valais this weekend.
The event, which has become established as Switzerlands biggest rally, is a round of the European Rally Championship and also qualifies for IRC Supporter Event status.
Basso, who will drive an Abarth Grande Punto Super 2000 alongside co-driver Mitia Dotta, only requires a handful of points to deny Pole Michal Solowow, his nearest challenger, the prestigious European title.
The Italian driver is currently fifth in the IRC standings having won Rali Vinho Madeira back in August. He hasnt competed in the series since Rally Principe de Austurias in Spain back in September due to his European championship commitments.
Swiss Olivier Burri, who finished seventh on the opening round of the IRC in Monte Carlo back in January, will also be in action at the wheel of another Grande Punto S2000.
S2000 opportunity for Wittmann
Franz Wittmann Jr will drive a Super 2000 car in competition for the first time when he contests Rallye Waldviertel in Austria on October 30/31.
Wittmann Jr, who is normally found at the wheel of a Ralliart Lancer E9, will drive a ROMO Motorsport-prepared Peugeot 207 S2000, which he tested for the first time earlier this month.
He said: Our goal is simply to gather kilometres. Thats what you need with this kind of car. It is comparatively easy to reach 80 per cent of whats possible but the remaining 20 percent takes time and a lot of patience. Im not putting myself under pressure but I want to be successful.
Wittmann Jr, who will be co-driven by Bernhard Ettel, will return to his Lancer E9 for RACMSA Rally of Scotland on November 19-21, the final round of the Intercontinental Rally Challenge. He is currently 12th in the standings. His best result to date is the fifth place he claimed on Rally Russia in July.
RACMSA Media Day
The organisers of the RACMSA Rally of Scotland are hosting an international media day in Glasgow on Wednesday, November 4.
The day will be split into two parts consisting of an exclusive event overview and Q&A session with motorsport legend Sir Jackie Stewart, former World Rally Championship navigator Robert Reid and drivers including Scottish Rally Champion David Bogie. Also Chief Executive of the event Andrew Coe and Paul Bush OBE, Chief Operating Officer at EventScotland.
Al-Attiyah plans IRC future
Qatari hero Nasser Al-Attiyah is contemplating a move to the Intercontinental Rally Challenge in 2010.
The 2006 Production Car World Rally Champion will make a decision on which car he will use in the coming weeks – but has confirmed he will again be partnered by Italian navigator Giovanni Bernacchini.
However, because the opening round of next years IRC, the Monte Carlo Rally, clashes with the first event in the Middle East championship, which Al-Attiyah is contesting, he is unlikely to begin his campaign until the second round in Brazil in early March.
The IRC is really interesting for me but I have yet to decide exactly my programme for next year, Al-Attiyah said. There are some exciting events on the calendar that I know from the World Rally Championship.
Al-Attiyah is planning an entry on the inaugural RACMSA Rally of Scotland from November 19-21, the final round of this years IRC.
BFGoodrich entries for Scotland now closed
The deadline for applications for the BFGoodrich Drivers Team entry on RACMSA Rally of Scotland has passed. On Friday November 6 an expert jury consisting of UK-based journalists, plus representatives of BFGoodrich, Kronos Racing and the Motor Sports Assocation, the governing body of British motorsport, will meet to determine the winner from a shortlist of five drivers.
On offer is a prize of a free drive on the final round of the Intercontinental Rally Challenge in a Kronos Racing-run Peugeot 207 Super 2000.
The BFGoodrich Drivers Team is a unique operation which represents an exceptional opportunity for the selected driver, said Kronos director Marc van Dalen.
Colin Hilton, the chief executive of the MSA, added: The UK is blessed with some extremely talented drivers. Whichever one of them is selected will make the most of the opportunity.
As well as an outing on the IRC finale, the winner will get a days test on November 16 to acclimatise to the Peugeot 207 and the range of BFGoodrich tyres.
Final BFGoodrich Drivers‘ Team star of 2009 soon to be announced
Champion’s praise for 2010 Monte Carlo TV package
The IRC’s unprecedented total of 14 hours of live television coverage for next year’s Monte Carlo Rally has received glowing praise from this year’s drivers champion Kris Meeke.
Fourteen special stages will be shown live, including on Eurosport, making the 2010 Monte the most televised rally in the sports history.
You have to take your hat off to the IRC organisers for what they have done with the television coverage, said Meeke. Fourteen stages will be live on TV thats 14 hours of live coverage including live in-car footage, which is just awesome.
With the TV package for Monte Carlo and the 12-event calendar for next year, the IRC has definitely got all the ingredients of what made rallying so popular in the 1980s.
Due to run from January 19-23, the event will form the first round of the next years 12-event IRC calendar.