Last time there was a collective “Phew!” of similar proportions, Citroën Racing denied rumours saying they were about to leave the World Rally Championship. Despite the fact that we’re still in a bit of a limbo when it comes to Citroën and their plans, this is not about French squad. Instead, let’s be happy and feel a massive relief over the news concerning our Dear Leaders, The Dominators, also known as Volkswagen Motorsport. Their board of power wielders have decided to allow them to keep playing in the mud for another five years, or up to (and including) 2019! Yeah!
At this point it’s hard to say whether they have some other long-term news to share, for example, driver contracts, but there is no doubt Volkswagen’s announcement made a big impact on the WRC, and in a very good way. Of course, with possible regulation changes set to storm our shores in the next couple of years, it’s a bit strange to see a single manufacturer blindly put their trust into this series. Unless they aren’t blind. I am pretty sure Volkswagen has a pretty clear picture of what the rules might look like in the next installment – either they have access to an early information (which any team should!) or they’re actively involved in shaping of those rules and they like what they see. If only promoters or the FIA would be so kind to share at least a glimpse of goodies they have (if they have!) in store for the WRC for the next couple of years. But for now, I guess we should be happy that at least one team is happy with the direction the sport has taken.
We also don’t know at this point if Volkswagen is going to expand their operations to include customer cars and/or cars for lower categories, but again, we also don’t know what will happen to those categories in the next few years.
No matter how you twist this, it’s a great bit of news. Volkswagen is here to stay, now we really REALLY need similar news coming from other teams. If only Ford could stop playing hard to get and do the right thing. Toyota? Still around? Renault? Opel?
Oh, by the way, if Volkswagen is set to stick around till 2019 that means Sebastien Ogier will only be able to secure seven titles with them. He needs at least three more, for obvious reasons.
— VolkswagenRally (@VolkswagenRally) June 10, 2014