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The Independent Automotive Aftermarket Federation

NGK-sponsored M-Sport drivers look forward to new WRC season


Date: 16-Jan-2020

Young rally stars Esapekka Lappi and Gus Greensmith are targeting a successful season in M-Sport Ford World Rally Team’s NGK-equipped Ford Fiesta WRCs.

They have joined forces with Teemu Suninen for the 2020 FIA World Rally Championship campaign in the EcoBoost-powered Ford Fiesta WRCs which are fitted with NGK spark plugs and NTK Lambda sensors.

The team unveiled the cars’ striking new livery this year on the first day of the Autosport International show at Birmingham’s NEC on Thursday, January 9.

Graphic Designer Phil Dixon has delivered another eye-catching creation, drawing inspiration from print designs of the early-to-mid 90s, with the Fiestas carrying a modern-retro theme as the team look to the future with a young and ambitious new line-up.
Lappi, who will lead the team alongside co-driver Janne Ferm, said he was looking forward to joining up with fellow Finn Suninen who continues his partnership with Jarmo Lehtinen.

He said: “Things have started well, and it will be useful to speak with Teemu in our shared language. As for the new season and our chances of making podium finishes, why not?”

He added: “I’m really looking forward to this new adventure and I’m excited to see what we can achieve. M Sport Ford has a real passion for rally and there were a lot of talented drivers available for this seat, so I’m very happy they put their trust in us – giving myself and Janne an opportunity to show what we can do in 2020.”

Joining the Finns in the third Ford Fiesta WRC on nine events are British talents Gus Greensmith and Elliott Edmondson. They will get their season underway in Monte-Carlo on January 23-26 before events in Mexico, Argentina, Portugal, Sardinia, Finland, Turkey, Germany and Wales. 

Greensmith said: “I am relatively new to rallying and am looking forward to driving in a big boy’s car. I’m really excited and I’m looking forward to competing in Monte-Carlo.”

He added: ““I have been waiting for this opportunity my whole life, and now I have it. I’ve progressed through M-Sport Ford’s ‘Ladder of Opportunity,’ from R1, to R2, to R5 and now WRC. I owe a lot to everyone at M-Sport and Ford who have helped me progress as a driver, but there is still a lot more to come.”

Suninen commented: “I feel as though I learnt a lot over the past 12 months, and I’m looking forward to seeing what Jarmo and I can do in 2020. Last year taught me that I need to give everything in all of the rallies if I want to reach the top results – and that’s what I hope to do this year.”

Mark Hallam, Marketing Manager, NGK Spark Plugs (UK) Ltd, said: “It was great to welcome Esapekka, Gus and Teemu on to our stand at the Autosport show where they had the opportunity to meet fans and sign souvenirs. I’m sure all NGK customers who are WRC fans can’t wait to see them in action in what should prove to be a very exciting 2020 WRC season.”

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