Evo India - - DUCATI MULTISTRAD­A 1200 S -

The new cars live up to that age-old mantra of look­ing fast while stand­ing still. We’re also en­cour­aged that they’ll back this up when they’re on the move.

We were lucky enough to watch Kris Meeke and Citroën at one of the C3 WRC’s fi­nal tests in Wales, and the car’s abil­ity to carry speed on a soak­ing, muddy stage was ev­ery­thing that ral­ly­ing should be: a jaw-drop­ping ve­hi­cle al­low­ing a top crew to dis­play skill, judge­ment and ca­jones on ter­rain that would over­come mere mor­tals. The new cars will be even bet­ter to watch over the snowy tracks of Swe­den or in the murky depths of Welsh forests.

The tech­ni­cal shake-up and the ab­sence of the all-con­quer­ing VW fac­tory team should de­liver a more open series, too, and it’s con­ceiv­able that by the fi­nal quar­ter of 2017 we could have four teams and six driv­ers ca­pa­ble of win­ning ev­ery event.

There’s also good news re­gard­ing cov­er­age of the WRC. Af­ter years of its pro­moter be­ing caught be­tween a de­sire to land global tele­vi­sion deals and a grow­ing re­al­i­sa­tion that in­ter­net stream­ing could de­liver the im­mer­sion ral­ly­ing’s die-hard fol­low­ers crave, it has been an­nounced that the 2017 sea­son will be broad­cast on Red Bull TV (avail­able at red­bull.tv or via a ded­i­cated app) and avail­able to watch free of charge. There will be live cov­er­age from each round, plus high­lights shows, while a series of guest hosts are set to in­clude a cer­tain Mark Web­ber.

So not only could WRC in 2017 de­liver close com­pe­ti­tion and a daz­zling spec­ta­cle, it should now be eas­ier for more peo­ple to ac­tu­ally see it.

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