Toyota Gazoo Racing World Rally Team head for Rally Australia this week aiming to clinch the manufacturers’ championship and with Ott Tänak still in contention for the drivers’ title.
The team have a 12-point advantage going into the final round of this year’s World Championship, while Tänak trails the leading driver by 23 points. His fellow Yaris WRC drivers Jari-Matti Latvala and Esapekka Lappi are also in the top five in the individual standings.
Tommi Mäkinen, Team Principal, is keen to end the year on a positive note: “This has been a thrilling season with many ups and downs, and everything is set for a very exciting final round. We have a great opportunity in front of us: to win a championship in just our second year would a fantastic achievement. As always, it is not going to be easy, but we have reasons to be confident. We showed good performance on gravel in Britain and in Spain, and we seem to have found some improvements in these kind of conditions, which are quite similar to what we should face in Australia,” he said.
“Everybody is working hard towards our target, and with a strong car and three strong drivers, I think we have a good chance to reach it.”
Rally Australia is based in Coffs Harbour in New South Wales, mid-way between Sydney and Brisbane. It features a mixture of gravel stages, from twisting forest tracks to more open and flowing country roads.
The first competitive action will be on Friday to the north of Coffs Harbour with two runs through the new Orara East and Coldwater stages and the unchanged Sherwood stage. Saturday’s loop is to the south and includes two new stages that use part of the previous Nambucca test, plus Urunga and the Raleigh raceway. The action on both days will culminate in a short waterside asphalt stage in Coffs Harbour.
Sunday’s final day features three stages, each run twice. The Wedding Bells Power Stage will wrap up the action ahead of the podium ceremony.
Pictures will be uploaded here during the event