Esapekka Lappi left us one of the most important news from the ACI Rally Monza. Once the rally was over, in the post-stage interview, the Finn made it very clear: “I’m afraid I won’t continue in 2021″. Those were the words of the 29-year-old at M-Sport.
Now, is it a fixed decision? No, Lappi’s continuity in the top flight seems unlikely. “I will probably have a very, very good time at home“ he replied, asked about his hopes for the 2021 season and his possible participation in the 2021 Monte Carlo Rally.
Lappi came to Citroën last year, as a teammate of Sebastien Ogier. He was in really good shape after his two years at Toyota, the team for which he took his first WRC victory, in Finland. 2020 has been his year at M-Sport, but the circumstances with the pandemic have not accompanied.
Malcom Wilson’s squad, managing director, does not have the same financial resources as Toyota and Hyundai, the two rival brands. So far this year they haven`t been able to perform almost any test kilometer. Of course, they haven`t lowered their guard, leading several rallies and adding podiums like Suninen’s in Mexico.
What will happen with M-Sport in 2021?
Right now, as of today, none of the 2020 competitors are confirmed. Esapekka Lappi is more outside than inside, with almost no options. For her part, Temu Suninen, official driver since 2017, is not guaranteed continuity either, since she doesn`t have a contract. Gus Greensmith, a paid driver, has also not confirmed an official program.
One of the drivers who is taking the most force to get on the Ford Fiesta WRC is Adrien Fourmaux. 2021 could be the year of the jump. He is the pupil of M-Sport and the French Federation, key support for its continuity. This year, the Frenchman has shown his quality in events such as the Canary Islands Rally, where he won with the Fiesta Rally2. In addition, the team already gave him the opportunity to get on Rally1 at the San Marino Rallye Legend.
Andreas Mikkelsen, for his part, is also looking for support to get into a top-class car. In one of his blogs on the Internet, the Norwegian stated that it is his main idea, having M-Sport in the spotlight for the possible seats available. However, the idea is more thought for 2022.
In the case of not having guaranteed drivers for next year, and focused on 2022, the big change campaign … Could M-Sport take a sabbatical year with the aim of returning with more strength? It is an option that is also in the air, but it is unlikely.
Toyota (Ogier, Evans, Rovanperä, Katsuta) and Hyundai (Neuville, Tänak, Sordo and Breen) do seem to have much clearer their lineups for next year, practically unchanged. If all goes well, Monte-Carlo will open the Championship on January 21. All doubts will be resolved by then, with official confirmations from the WRC squads.