Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT

Toyota SA Toyota AA Toyota Yaris WRC
Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT
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Full nameToyota Gazoo Racing World Rally Team
BaseFinland Jyväskylä, Finland
Estonia Peetri, Estonia[1]
Team principal(s)Tommi Mäkinen
DriversFrance Sébastien Ogier
United Kingdom Elfyn Evans
Finland Kalle Rovanperä
Co-driversFrance Julien Ingrassia
United Kingdom Scott Martin
Finland Jonne Halttunen
ChassisToyota Yaris WRC
TyresMichelin
World Rally Championship career
Debut2017
Constructors' Championships1 (2018)
Drivers' Championships1 (2019)
Rally wins15

Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT is a World Rally Championship (WRC) team based in Finland[2] that serves as Toyota's official factory team.[3][4] Its team principal is four time World Drivers' Champion Tommi Mäkinen.[5] The team made its début during the 2017 season, where it entered the Toyota Yaris WRC.[6] The team is a separate entity from the Toyota Gazoo Racing team led by Toyota Motorsport GmbH that competes in the World Endurance Championship.[7]

In 2018, the team managed to win the World Rally Championship. This earned Toyota their first manufacturers' title since 1999.[8]

History

Toyota's return to the World Rally Championship and the development of the Yaris WRC was originally overseen by Toyota Motorsport GmbH, the successor to Toyota Team Europe, the team that ran Toyota Celicas and the Toyota Corolla WRC in the 1980s and 1990s. With Toyota Motorsport GmbH also overseeing the development and operation of the Toyota TS050 Hybrid in the World Endurance Championship, Toyota elected to reassign the project to Tommi Mäkinen. Mäkinen shelved the Yaris WRC prototype developed by Toyota Motorsport GmbH and started anew.[citation needed] [9] [10] [11]

2017

Esapekka Lappi on the way to victory in the 2017 Rally Finland

Toyota made their return to the WRC after eighteen years of absence in 2017 season with Toyota Yaris WRC.[6][3] Jari-Matti Latvala and co-driver Miikka Anttila left Volkswagen Motorsport following the team's withdrawal from the sport to join Toyota Gazoo Racing,[4] where they were partnered with Juho Hänninen—who returned to the championship for the first time since 2014—and Kaj Lindström.[12] Reigning WRC-2 champions Esapekka Lappi and Janne Ferm made their début in a WRC specification car, contesting a partial campaign from the Rally of Portugal.[4][13] Toyota last competed in the sport as a factory-supported team between 1997 and 1999 with the Corolla WRC before withdrawing ahead of the 2000 season to focus on its Formula One project.

Toyota Yaris WRC - Jari-Matti Latvala - Buenos Aires Motorshow 2017

The team took their first podium at the 2017 Monte Carlo Rally, and took their first win at the next round in the 2017 Rally Sweden. The teams best run of the season came in Finland, with Esapekka Lappi taking his first WRC win and Juho Hänninen taking his first podium finish, Jari-Matti Latvala had to retire from the lead with a mechanical problem.

2018

Before the 2018 season, Ott Tänak and Martin Järveoja left M-Sport to join the team, replacing Juho Hänninen and Kaj Lindström.[14] Hänninen and Lindström remained with the team, with Hänninen taking on a test driver role and Lindström replacing Jarmo Lehtinen as the team's sporting director. [15]

In August, the team located its service base to Estonia, 8 km from the capital of Tallinn. Headquarters, development, testing and administration will stay in Finland.[1]

Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT was able to capture the 2018 World Rally Championship manufacturers title. With Tommi Mäkinen heading the team, he became the first person in the history of rally driving to win a Championship both as a driver and as a team principal.[16] Ott Tänak took four rally wins, including three consecutive and Jari-Matti Latvala won once.[17]

2019

In 2019, Esapekka Lappi and Janne Ferm left to join Citroën after two years with the team.[18] Kris Meeke and Sebastian Marshall would instead drive a third car in the championship.[19]

2020

Now entering the 2020 season, Toyota has a brand new line up with six-time WRC champion Sébastien Ogier joining from Citroën who have pulled out of the 2020 season with Elfyn Evans from M-Sport and Kalle Rovanperä from Škoda Motorsport all joining Toyota for this season, as 2019 champion Ott Tänak left to join Hyundai, and Kris Meeke left the team as well.

WRC results

References

  1. ^ a b "Toyota completes Estonia switch - wrc.com". www.wrc.com. Retrieved 28 August 2018.
  2. ^ "Toyota: Está de regresso um 'gigante' da história do WRC". 14 January 2017.
  3. ^ a b "Toyota GAZOO Racing Outlines 2016 Motorsports Activities". Toyota. 4 February 2015. Retrieved 17 April 2016.
  4. ^ a b c "Toyota confirms all Finnish WRC line-up". speedcafe.com. 13 December 2016. Retrieved 13 December 2016.
  5. ^ "Tommi Mäkinen to head up Toyota's WRC bid". speedcafe.com. 7 July 2015. Retrieved 7 March 2016.
  6. ^ a b "Toyota announces WRC return in 2017". Toyota GB Blog. Toyota GB. Retrieved 7 March 2016.
  7. ^ "TOYOTA GAZOO Racing Outlines 2017 Motorsports Activities | PRESS RELEASE | 2017 | OTHER MOTORSPORTS | TOYOTA GAZOO Racing". TOYOTA GAZOO Racing. Retrieved 2 August 2017.
  8. ^ Van Leeuwen, Andrew (18 November 2018). "Rally Australia: Latvala wins as Ogier, Toyota claim WRC titles". autosport.com. Motorsport Network. Retrieved 8 December 2018.
  9. ^ https://www.wrc.com/en/news/news-archive/wrc/q-a--tommi--makinen/
  10. ^ https://www.caradvice.com.au/364302/tommi-makinen-to-lead-toyota-yaris-wrc-team-in-2017/
  11. ^ https://www.firstpost.com/auto/wrc-toyota-yaris-wrc-prototype-caught-testing-in-spain-3072616.html?FP_Source=FP_Hi_DT_TS_Wgt_3072616&FP_Medium=FP_Hi_Topstories_140940
  12. ^ Evans, David (18 October 2016). "WRC 2017: Juho Hanninen gets first seat in Toyota's new Yaris". autosport.com. Haymarket Publications. Retrieved 18 October 2016.
  13. ^ Beer, Matt; Evans, David (18 April 2017). "Toyota to add third Yaris WRC for Lappi from Rally Portugal". autosport.com. Motorsport Network. Retrieved 19 April 2017.
  14. ^ Evans, David (18 October 2017). "Toyota signs Ott Tanak from M-Sport for 2018 WRC season". autosport.com. Motorsport Network. Retrieved 18 October 2017.
  15. ^ "Tänak joins Toyota". www.wrc.com. 2017-10-18. Retrieved 2018-08-23.
  16. ^ "Tommi Mäkinen on rallin Midas – näin Puuppolan päälliköstä tuli historiallinen maailmanmestari Toyotan tallipäällikkönä". Aamulehti (in Finnish). 18 November 2018. Retrieved 8 December 2018.
  17. ^ Season 2018 ewrc-results.com
  18. ^ "Esapekka Lappi Joins Citroën Total Abu Dhabi WRT". media.citroenracing.com. Citroën Total Abu Dhabi WRT. 17 October 2018. Retrieved 17 October 2018.
  19. ^ "TOYOTA GAZOO Racing confirms WRC driver line-up for 2019". toyotagazooracing.com. Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT. 17 October 2018. Retrieved 17 October 2018.