View Full Version : M sport lives on in season 2013

27th November 2012, 10:15 PM
M-Sport have secured their World Rally Championship future after Ford's withdrawal at the end of 2012, and signed rising star Mads Ostberg.

The former factory-backed team have announced a partnership with Qatar and will run three Ford Fiesta RS WRCs under the Qatar M-Sport World Rally Team banner in 2013.

One car will be driven in all 13 rounds by Ostberg and co-driver Jonas Andersson, while Qatari-born driver Nasser Al-Attiyah and co-driver Giovanni Bernacchini will pilot another in seven rounds of the championship.

There were question marks over how the team's programme would look after Ford announced it would depart the championship at the end of the year, while M-Sport's lead driver Jari-Matti Latvala signed a deal for 2013 and beyond with Volkswagen.

Ostberg, who won Rally Portugal this year after Mikko Hirvonen's disqualification, has two years of experience in privately-entered Fords and is looking forward to making the step up.

"I am really happy to have been chosen to join the team and continue working closely with M-Sport next season," Ostberg said.

"We’ve been working with the car for two years now – we know the car and we know the team so from the technical side of things, I think we will be in a really good position as there won’t be too much of a change to get used to.

"But from the other side of things, it will still be a big challenge - albeit a big step in the right direction!

"This is a great opportunity for me. I have had many dreams in my career, but achieving this drive is definitely one of the biggest and I am certainly going to try and make the most of it."

M-Sport managing director Malcolm Wilson said he is delighted to announce the team's new partnerships, and is excited to see what Ostberg will do in a top car.

"Since the 2012 season came to a close, work has not stopped and the entire team is working around the clock to ensure we deliver a strong package for next year," he said.

"Mads’ [Østberg] performance this year has been very impressive. He has always had the speed, but his progression on tarmac and the maturity he has demonstrated this season proves that he is ready to make the next step in his career and made him the ideal candidate to join the team in 2013.

"The partnership with Nasser [Al-Attiyah] and the Qatari State will enable M-Sport to continue at the pinnacle of the sport and we are looking forward to working together in the future."

The 2013 World Rally Championship kicks off with the 81st Rallye Monte-Carlo on January 15 2013.

Read more: http://www.foxsports.com.au/motor-sports/m-sport-sign-mads-ostberg-and-secure-world-rally-championship-future-with-qatar-backing/story-e6frf3z3-1226524654998#ixzz2DQOBAWoz