“This is what we wanted maybe 15 years ago. There will be more car enthusiast who will be joining the races because it becomes more affordable. Also, the driving will be better and the competition. When driving a less powerful car, you will learn a lot of things that only an underpowered car can teach you. Example of this is suspension tuning, carrying of speed on the corner, braking efficiently,knowing the engine max output at a given terrain and so on. These learning will eventually make the difference when all of you are all driving high horsepower cars. Your experience of driving low power cars will come into play.”
- Vip Isada, 10-time Philippine Rally Champion
The British rally championship have moved to a two-wheel drive championship. With such a move by one of the most famous national championships in the world, we can only await what the other nations’ direction and approach for the future of rallying could be.
Many of the championships are adopting a two-wheel drive format in consideration for a cheaper way to continue rallying, having more manufacturers with entry level cars to participate, encouraging young and new drivers to join, and narrowing competition to a level playing field.
The four-wheel drive rally cars are now becoming a thing of the past for privateers running the production classes (Group N). With only Mitsubishi and Subaru supplying cars for the four-wheel drive. Other drivers have moved to a more expensive range of modern rallycars such as the s2000 class. Unfortunately, moving to the s2000 class went to a more serious line of rallying once again, becoming more expensive for the average privateer.
The historic rally cars have also become a trend. Many would think such cars are cheaper and maybe pick it up as junk. But then enthusiasts will always find the means of improving it to the highest level of its glory days. They come out to be more expensive after building it up to a proper rallycar. Everything becomes too expensive, time is taken collecting rare or outdated parts for the car, and by the time it is finished, a new generation of rallycars are competing again.
Moving to a two wheel drive championship with entry level cars from the manufacturer would be a good move. An old American racing quote, “Race on Sunday, sell on Monday”, should be kept in mind. The manufacturers are selling cars that are affordable and yet still maintain an appeal to many. Manufacturers can boast their entry level cars of quality, performance and at their uplift their customer’s confidence to the brand.
Of course before we start talking about manufacturers coming in, the privateers and real motorsports enthusiasts have to kick start such a campaign. Start racing on a manageable state and to continue on having fun racing and rallying!
Here are some other ideas of what these championships could look like. Although the best example so far I would say is still the first video of the 2012 British Rally Championship Preview.
In the Philppines back in 2003, a two-wheel drive 1600cc national championship had already been done. Just look at how leveled and exciting the competition was.
Australia have already added a 2wd Championship. By 2013, they are set to have their two-wheel drive championship as their main championship.
America is giving importance to their two-wheel drive championship.
A link of the American two-wheel drive championship
Another British Rally League, the BTRDA, have a 1400cc cup. They even feature them first before the four-wheel drives.
For the world rally championship you do have the WRC Drivers Academy.