ACI Rally Monza: New WRC2 Champion* Andreas Mikkelsen leads ŠKODA squad into “finale grande”
For the second time in a row, the famous Formula One circuit of Monza in Italy hosts the finale of the FIA World Rally Championship. ACI Rally Monza (19–21 November) welcomes Andreas Mikkelsen (NOR) of ŠKODA Motorsport supported team Toksport WRT as prematurely crowned WRC2 Drivers’ Champion. Thus, the Norwegian can fully concentrate on saving the WRC2 Teams’ Championship for Toksport WRT. Also driving a ŠKODA FABIA Rally2 evo, Kajetan Kajetanowicz and co-driver Maciej Szczepaniak (POL/POL) fight for the WRC3 category title.
For ŠKODA driver Andreas Mikkelsen, the 2021 season was his most successful in terms of titles. The 32 years old Norwegian prematurely won the WRC2 Drivers’ category of the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC) as well as the FIA European Rally Championship (ERC). At the season finishing ACI Rally Monza, his main goal is to help Toksport WRT to win the WRC2 Championship for Teams. His new co-driver for this event will be Briton Phil Hall. “Last year at this event, I won the WRC3 category on my return to the World Rally Championship with ŠKODA,” Mikkelsen says ahead of the WRC’s Italian “grande finale”.
Mikkelsen’s young teammate Marco Bulacia will join the fight for the team’s title. Strong competition for both Toksport WRT crews will come from Nicolay Gryazin/Konstantin Aleksandrov. Driving a privately entered ŠKODA FABIA Rally2 evo, the Russian crew proved their speed on tarmac stages with a second place in WRC2 at the recent RallyRACC Rally de España.
In the WRC3 category the private ŠKODA FABIA Rally2 evo crew Kajetan Kajetanowicz/Maciej Szczepaniak from Poland has chances to win the title. Coming to Monza, Kajetanowicz leads the overall classification with the same points total as Frenchman Yohan Rossel. The 2019 FIA European Rally Champions Chris Ingram/Ross Whittock (GBR/GBR) target a top WRC3 result with their ŠKODA FABIA Rally2 evo as well. With a total of 28 entries at ACI Rally Monza, ŠKODA is once again the most popular brand in the class of Rally2 cars.
ACI Rally Monza features 16 special stages totalling 245.46 kilometres. The rally kicks off on Friday (19 November) with a first loop of four stages in the mountains to the north of Monza, before it returns to the Autodromo Nazionale di Monza for three more stages. On Saturday (20 November), the rally heads north for another four stages on country roads, the afternoon sees two tests on the Monza circuit.
On Sunday (21 November), the remaining three stages in Monza will be decisive. The winner will be celebrated at 14h00 on the podium usually used for the Formula One race.* subject to confirmation of the results by the FIA
Did you know, that…
…Rally Monza was organized for the first time in 1978 and until 1984 featured only stages on mixed surfaces on paved tracks and dirt roads in the circuit’s inner areas?
…the name of the rally was changed in 2003 to “Monza Rally Show”?
…ACI Rally Monza only for the second time is counting as a round towards the FIA World Rally Championship?
…that the country with Rally Italia Sardegna is hosting two rounds of the FIA World Rally Championship for the second year in a row?
Top-3 overall WRC2/Drivers (before ACI Rally Monza)
1. Andreas Mikkelsen (NOR), ŠKODA FABIA Rally2 evo, 126 points
2. Mads Østberg (NOR), Citroën C3 Rally2, 126 points
3. Marco Bulacia (BOL), ŠKODA FABIA Rally2 evo, 104 points
Top-3 overall WRC2/Teams (before ACI Rally Monza)
1. Toksport WRT (ŠKODA), 211 points
2. Movisport, 202 points
3. M-Sport Ford World Rally Team, 146 points
Top-3 overall WRC3/Drivers (before ACI Rally Monza)
1. Kajetan Kajetanowicz (POL), ŠKODA FABIA Rally2 evo, 127 points
2. Yohan Rossel (FRA), Citroën C3 Rally2, 127 points
3. Emil Lindholm (FIN), ŠKODA FABIA Rally2 evo, 73 points
2021 FIA World Rally Championship
Rallye Monte-Carlo 21 – 24 January
Arctic Rally Finland powered by CapitalBox 25 – 28 February
Rally Croatia 22 – 25 April
Vodafone Rally Portugal 20 – 23 May
Rally Italia Sardegna 3 – 6 June
Safari Rally Kenya 24 – 27 June
Rally Estonia 15 – 18 July
Renties Ypres Rally Belgium 13 – 15 August
Acropolis Rally Greece 9 – 12 September
Secto Automotive Rally Finland 1 – 3 October
RallyRACC Rally de España 14 – 17 October
ACI Rally Monza (Italy) 19 – 21 November