2021 World Rally Championship Safari Rally Kenya Preview

This week will see the World Rally Championship (WRC) return for the latest event of its 2021 season. The Safari Rally Kenya last held a WRC event back in 2002 which was won by Colin McRae.

Ahead of the 2021 edition of the event, Sebastien Ogier leads the championship for drivers by 11 points from nearest rival, and teammate, Elfyn Evans with Thierry Neuville completing the top three.

Ogier has finished inside the top three in four of the five rallies held so far this season, of which three of those are victories. One of those victories included last time out at Rally Italia Sardegna where he won ahead of Evans and Neuville.

Embed from Getty Images

Similar to Ogier, Evans has finished inside the top two in four of the five rallies contested so far this season and has an 18 point advantage over Neuville.

Neuville bounced back from a disappointing Rally Portugal to once again finish third last time out. It does mean the Belgian is still yet to finish higher than third this season. He does however have a 28 point advantage over teammate Ott Tanak who is fourth in the championship for drivers. The Estonian is one point ahead of Toyota’s Takamoto Katsuta.

This week’s rally feels like an important one for the entire Hyundai team who have started the last two rallies well only for it all to unravel. Yes in Portugal Dani Sordo finished second for the Korean outfit, and as mentioned Neuville finished third last time out. But the Korean manufacturer could be in such a more dominant position having at times occupied the top three positions during the early stages of rallies.

WRC Hyundai 02” by Ivan Vranic is licensed under CC0 1.0

Also of interest during this week’s rally will be following Oliver Solberg. The Safari Rally Kenya is set to be the Swede’s second outing of 2021 in WRC after he impressed at Arctic Rally Finland earlier in the year.

In the championship for manufacturers Toyota continue to lead the way and have a 49 point advantage over Hyundai. There is then a 100 point gap between Hyundai and M-Sport Ford in third.

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