Pirelli keeps an eye on possible WRC return
Pirelli’s motorsport director Paul Hembery has refused to rule out a full-time return to the World Rally Championship in the future.
The Italian firm has withdrawn from next season’s WRC, but rally fan Hembery said it could be back to add to its tally of 23 world titles and 180 world rally wins under the right conditions.
“I wouldn’t say this is the end of the road for us in the WRC, far from it,” he told MN. “But a return for us would depend on a lot of factors, including the health of the championship and the health of rallying in general. We have an ongoing position in global rallying on a regional, classic and domestic level and if we feel the platform of the World Rally Championship fits with out strategy, we will, of course return.”
Hembery confirmed Pirelli has produced a tyre suitable for 2017-specification World Rally Cars, ensuring the door remains open for a possible quick return.
“Being a world championship, the WRC consumes significant resources,” added Hembery. “For us to come back we would have to be in the situation where we have an opportunity to work with a partner to put together a package to win rallies.”
Lorenzo Bertolli was the last WRC car on Pirellis in Australia in 2015