MRF to enter World Rally Championship-2 with Gaurav Gill

The switch to WRC-2 ends MRF’s 16-year campaign in the Asia Pacific Rally Championship, where it won nine titles, including three with Gill.

The announcement means that Gaurav Gill finally gets to drive at a significantly higher level, something he was itching to do after the APRC success in 2013, 2016 and 2017. (File Photo)   -  M. PERIASAMY

In a big move for Indian motorsports, Team MRF with three-time Asia Pacific Rally Champion Gaurav Gill behind the wheel will enter the World Rally Championship-2 for the 2018 season.

Team MRF won the APRC nine times with Gill winning the titles in 2013, 2016 and 2017. Speaking to Sportstar, an elated Gaurav Gill said, “It is a positive direction for me and MRF. We have won the APRC several times and now it will help us show our products at the global level.”

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He added, “I am thankful to the MRF family with whom I have been associated for 10 years and I know they want to showcase that MRF can compete with the best in the world and WRC offers the best platform for that.”

Gill tried his hands at WRC in what was then called the Production WRC class, a precursor to the now WRC-3 category in three events in 2008 and 2009. “I have been wanting to do the WRC for the last couple of years. I have competed against drivers who are doing well there now and I have always believed I can do well,” added the 36-year old Delhi-based racer.

Keeping expectations low, Gill said the target for the season is to learn all the rallies and conditions in different countries. “We will be focussing only on the gravel rallies this year and our main focus is to learn and collect as much data possible to prepare ourselves. There will be a lot of data collection and R&D work going on this year,” said Gill.

In the APRC, Team MRF had partnered with Skoda S2000 before moving to Skoda Fabia R5 in 2016. However, for the WRC-2, while there is no announcement on the car, it is understood the team won't be using a Skoda.

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