Here we go, round 4! Our first full tarmac event and part one of the “neighboring islands doubleheader” (look up Corsica and Sardegna on a map). We’ve got a lot of good contenders here, so let’s get to it.
Mexico was to another tough one to predict. Loeb came back from rally retirement and led his first event in the new C3 until a flat tire dropped him to fifth. The hand of God came down on Toyota and hit all three drivers with mechanical woes. Kris Meeke did what Kris Meeke do, and he still finished third. Then there was Elfyn Evans’ crash, which left Dan Barritt with what now appears to be a rather serious concussion as Dan will be sitting out Corsica as well. GiuRX, who missed the first round in Monte, was our winner in Mexico, while the House surprisingly tied for second.
Ah yes, I should explain the House. Those of you who look at the score spreadsheets may have noticed House and its red bar. House is something I’ve been toying with for fun since the second half of last season. It’s made up of the top pick for every position, just to see where the popular vote lands. Anyway, that’s that thing. On to Corsica.
Corsica is, of course, one of the legendary stops on the WRC calendar. Known as “The Rally of 10,000 Corners,” the endlessly winding roads are a challenge for both driver and co-driver. And, to keep things fresh, most of the rally route this year is completely different from last year. This could actually play into the hands of Sebastien Loeb as it means most of the stages will be new for everyone, not just him.
There are a whopping four WRC Tour de Corse winners on the entry list, a statistic which is particularly impressive considering the WRC didn’t even run here from 2009 to 2014 (Rally de France was held on the mainland in Alsace those years). Thierry Neuville won it in 2017, Ogier in 2016, Latvala in 2015, and Loeb in 2008... and 2007... and 2006... and 2005. Bryan Bouffier also won Tour de Corse in 2013 when it was an ERC round. (Speaking of Alsace, keep in mind the Fantasy WRC performance stats are by nation, not just event, so the Alsace and Corsica results are mixed together. You may need to do a little digging to see if a driver did well at one venue but struggled at the other).
If you’re not struggling enough as it is trying to figure out who to pick here, Andreas Mikkelsen has finished third on both his visits to the island, and has always scored points when rallying in France. Jari-Matti has three fourth place finishes to back up his Corsica win, which in the past ten years is his worst result at any French WRC round. Then of course there’s Dani Sordo and Elfyn Evans, both of whom have found the podium here, and Kris Meeke, who led last year’s event from the start and never lost that lead until his engine gave up the ghost.
Want to see how you did last year and refresh yourself on the rules? Check this out right here. Here’s the official Entry List, and the current fantasy points spreadsheet. And while you’re at it, you can also look at the driver’s data and statistics here.
DEADLINE FOR PICKS: April 6, 2018, 3:50 AM EDT
(5 point per stage penalty after this time. Stage schedule here)
M-SPORT WORLD RALLY TEAM - FORD FIESTA RS WRC
Sebastien Ogier (FRA) - Avg last 10 rounds: 13.6 - Avg France: 14.4
Elfyn Evans (GBR) - Avg last 10 rounds: 7.9 - Avg France: 8.7
Bryan Bouffier (FRA) - Avg last 8 rounds: 4.8 - Avg France: 3.0
HYUNDAI MOTORSPORT - HYUNDAI i20 COUPE WRC
Andreas Mikkelsen (NOR) - Avg last 10 rounds: 8.8 - Avg France: 13.5
Theirry Neuville (BEL) - Avg last 10 rounds: 13.4 - Avg France: 11.8
Dani Sordo (ESP) - Avg last 10 rounds: 5.2 - Avg France: 10.3
CITROEN TOTAL ABU DHABI WORLD RALLY TEAM - CITROEN C3 WRC
Kris Meeke (GBR) - Avg last 10 rounds: 6.8 - Avg France: 5.4
Sebastien Loeb (FRA) - Avg last 10 rounds: 15.0 - Avg France 15.0
TOYOTA GAZOO RACING WRC - TOYOTA YARIS WRC
Jari Matti Latvala (FIN) - Avg last 10 rounds: 5.9 - Avg France: 15.9
Ott Tanak (EST) - Avg last 10 rounds: 11.7 - Avg France: 2.5
Esapekka Lappi (FIN) - Avg last 10 rounds: 6.5 - Avg France: N/A
SINGLE CAR TEAMS AND INDEPENDENTS:
*Alain Vautier* (FRA) - FORD - Avg last 3 rounds: 0.0 - Avg France: 0.0
*Armando Pereira* (FRA) - FORD - Avg last 4 rounds: 0.0 - Avg France: 0.0
*Mauro Miele* (ITA) - CITROEN - Avg last 0 rounds: N/A - Avg France: N/A
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