|The brand-new M-Sport Poland-built Fiesta Rally3 has been officially homologated as a competition car built to the FIA’s Rally3 technical regulations and following its successful competition debut on the snow and ice of O.K. Auto-Ralli in Finland.
Representing the start of a new era for rallying and a new weapon to attack the stages with, the cost-effective four-wheel drive Fiesta Rally3 is the first and currently the only homologated Rally3 car. It represents a significant commitment from M-Sport to supporting every single rally category in the FIA’s Rally Pyramid while officially completing M-Sport’s ‘Ladder of Opportunity’.
The Rally3 category will provide a crucial steppingstone for young rally drivers looking to learn the ropes of four-wheel drive rallying and move on from two-wheel drive rally cars like the Fiesta Rally4. Supporting young drivers is the core value of M-Sport which was further underlined in Finland by 2020 ERC3 and ERC3 Junior Champion Ken Torn being selected to make the Fiesta Rally3’s official competition debut. Torn guided the EcoBoost powered Fiesta Rally3 to 11th overall on the rally, posting top-ten times on stages he had never driven on before against a field of experienced locals. Torn’s confidence continued to grow behind the wheel of the Fiesta Rally3 on O.K. Auto-Ralli taking a pair of seventh places on the final two stages of the rally. Torn went faster than all Group N cars on the last pair of stages, duelling with the Rally2 field and was just 10 seconds shy of the fastest Rally2 time on SS6.
M-Sport Managing Director, Malcolm Wilson OBE: “This is a huge milestone for M-Sport Poland and also for rallying. The first ever Rally3 car has now been homologated and it bears the M-Sport name. From the outset of the draft regulations, we were determined to support this category as it will offer so many opportunities for young drivers and drivers in national championships. Sustainable and cost-effective cars are needed now more than ever in order to ensure smooth progression for drivers and also for those looking to compete in four-wheel drive machinery with lower running costs. Undoubtedly, we will see more manufacturers join which I am really looking forward too. Fundamentally it is competition that motivates us and we want to see a thrilling fight on the stages in the Rally3 category. It’s because of this competitive spirit that our Fiesta Rally3 car is ready to go today, to push our experience and learn even more to support our customers and drivers.”
Maciej Woda, M-Sport Poland Director: “A monumental effort has gone in behind the scenes at our facility in Krakow. I cannot thank the team enough for everything they have done against all of the difficulty we have faced, especially since the COVID-19 pandemic hit. Their determination and dedication has really shone through on the Fiesta Rally3 and it is reflected in the end result. Every single member of M-Sport Poland is a credit to the team and the Fiesta Rally3. It’s a similar story for the lineup of drivers who helped to test and develop the car too, we owe a huge thanks to Nil Solans, Kajetan Kajetanowicz, Matthew Wilson, Ken Torn, Egon Kaur and most recently Tom Kristensson. It’s a very daunting task designing and building a totally new car for an equally new category as there is no reference point for anybody to use. That is what made creating the Fiesta Rally3 exciting, but it also made us push ourselves in every aspect to ensure no stone was left unturned.
“The Fiesta Rally3 made its official competition debut on the weekend in Finland with Ken Torn. The O.K. Auto-Ralli is a fast rally with experienced locals so it was a great opportunity to really put the car to the test with a driver who has limited road-knowledge of the rally. Ken demonstrated the Fiesta Rally3 is a car you can get into and be competitive with Group N cars straight away. As he settled into the rhythm he really put some great top-ten stage times together, beating all Group N cars in the last two stages as well as mixing it up with some of the Rally2 drivers too. The whole team, together with Ken did a great job.”
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