Ford Motor Company has announced on Monday it is withdrawing works support from the World Rally Championship starting from next season.
“Ford will withdraw from @OfficialWRC as title sponsor after 2012. #FordWRC thanks its fans, drivers and many partners for their support,” a Ford tweet read. Currently there are talks being held about keeping the Ford cars in next year’s championship but without a works presence. Ford’s best ranked driver its Finn Jari-Matti Latvala, third in current standings.
“Ford has a long and proud history in the WRC and this was not an easy decision. We have great respect for M-Sport and Malcolm Wilson, who have run the Ford WRC team since 1997, and there is no organisation with more expertise and commitment to winning,” said Roelant de Waard, Ford of Europe’s vice president of marketing, sales and service.
The M-Sport organisation has run Ford’s factory outfit since 1997, winning the manufacturers’ championships in 2006 and 2007. It is not the first news of such kind for rally fans this year, as Mini recently announced it is pulling out of the WRC from 2013 and multiple world champion Sebastian Loeb said he will scale back the number of rallies he will race in 2013.