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Neuville’s WRC contract talks ready on Hyundai joker affirmation

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Thierry Neuville is hopeful contract renewal talks can start quickly as soon as Hyundai’s plan to utilise its improvement jokers for its World Rally Championship automotive is confirmed.

The WRC factors chief is within the remaining yr of his present contract with the South Korean marque, 11 years since he joined the Alzenau operation.

Neuville has previously stated a desire to continue competing in WRC’s top tier, though the Belgian admitted earlier this yr that his future was threatened by the uncertainty over the WRC’s mooted technical regulation modifications for subsequent yr that prompted doubts over Hyundai’s participation within the championship.  

Since these feedback, the FIA announced a U-turn on the proposed technical reforms earlier this month following a request for stability in rules led by the producers.

Neuville says his future remains to be but to be secured because the five-time championship runner-up awaits remaining affirmation over Hyundai’s improvement joker plan.

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The workforce is hoping to make use of two years’ price of jokers for enhancing its i20 N after it was compelled to cancel improvement of a brand new automotive as a result of uncertainty in technical rules triggered by the FIA’s February reforms.

“I’ve no affirmation about something but,” Neuville instructed Autosport when requested about his future.

“However I knew that the choice from the World Motor Sport Council and the appliance of the present jokers and future jokers had been crucial, and I do know that has been all labored out in a great way.

Thierry Neuville, Martijn Wydaeghe, Hyundai World Rally Crew Hyundai i20 N Rally1

Photograph by: McKlein / Motorsport Images

“I imagine that it’s going effectively however I’ve no affirmation, so let’s see. If I get affirmation, [contract talks] will begin very quickly.”

Neuville is nonetheless relieved that the World Motor Sport Council determined to uphold the request of the producers to retain the present Rally1 and Rally2 technical rules till the tip of 2026.  

This transfer, coupled with the WRC Promoter’s roadmap to improve the promotion of the championship, has given Neuville cause to imagine that the collection can enhance its recognition.

“It’s a huge aid,” he added. “I imagine there are 4 producers which can be relived as effectively, as all of them requested [for the rules to stay the same].

“I believe that’s necessary. There was extra of a must safe the present producers for the upcoming two seasons than altering the foundations with no affirmation of any new producer.

“I believe the FIA understood that it was necessary to safe the present producers and never solely contemplating the foundations, presenting a roadmap for the promotion and evolution of the promotion of the championship.

“I’m comfortable and there are nonetheless issues to work on for positive. However with [Sebastien Ogier’s former co-driver] Julien Ingrassia concerned with the promoter now to make a hyperlink between the drivers and the promoter, and Scott Martin [Elfyn Evans’ co-driver] representing the drivers within the WRC Fee, I believe collectively we will convey it [the WRC] to a different stage.”

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