While several Hyundai i20 R5s will be used in the pursuit of FIA European Rally Championship success on Rally di Roma Capitale, two Hyundai i20 Coupe World Rally Cars are set to contest the accompanying Rally Stars event driven by Pierre-Louis Loubet and Dani Sordo.
Organised by Max Rendina and his team at Motorsport Italia, the driving force behind Rally di Roma Capitale, Rally Stars will use the same all-asphalt stages that are being prepared to challenge some of Europe’s best drivers on Rally di Roma Capitale, which is scheduled to take place from 24-26 July as the opening rounds of the ERC and CIR (Italian championship) seasons.
Drivers entering the standalone Rally Stars will contest their own event and will not feature on the Rally di Roma Capitale entry list, start lists or classification. They will not be eligible for the Rally di Roma Capitale title or trophies, nor will they be eligible for European or Italian championship points in accordance with the regulations.
Following the final Rally Stars entrant, an additional zero car will complete each stage before the first car contesting Rally di Roma Capitale starts. Subject to confirmation, there will be a 20-minute gap between the first car starting Rally Stars and the first car starting Rally di Roma Capitale. A strong entry for Rally di Roma Capitale, featuring some of Europe’s brightest young talents, is expected.
Rally di Roma Capitale and Rally Stars have been planned to include 18 stages over a competitive distance of more than 200 kilometres. Both events will be based out of Fiuggi, south-west of Rome.
Sordo’s most recent ERC event experience came on Barum Czech Rally Zlín in 2018 when he beat Miroslav Jakeš to third place by 0.3s in a thrilling finish at the wheel of a Hyundai i20 R5.
Loubet, whose father Yves became European champion in 1989, made his ERC debut in 2015 before going on to contest four rounds of the ERC1 Junior Championship between 2018-2019, scoring a class podium in fifth overall on Rally Islas Canarias last season.
Meanwhile, Craig Breen and Callum Devine, a Hyundai Customer Racing Junior Driver, are registered for the 2020 FIA European Rally Championship under the Team MRF Tyres and Motorsport Ireland Rally Academy banners respectively. They are both expected to compete on Rally di Roma Capitale in Hyundai i20 R5s.