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GP Week : Issue 118
Plans are advanced for Nasser Al Attiyah to launch the new Volkswagen WRC rally programme – not as declared in 2013, but this year at the Neste Oil Rally Finland. It is believed that Al Attiyah is to drive one of the Skoda Fabia S2000s recently acquired by VW Motorsport, as the start of an exercise in which VW's technicians and engineers, already well experienced in rally raid work, learn the practicalities about WRC sport. The possibility of an activity like this was announced at the launch of the VW rally project before the start of Rally Italia Sardegna. Nasser's sponsor Barwa WRT is entered in the 2011 SWRC series, and engaged in competition with a Ford Fiesta S2000, with Finland the one event the team declared they would miss. Autotek, the team which runs the Fords for Nasser, confirmed they had heard about the VW-Skoda project, but did not expect the remainder of Nasser's SWRC project with Ford would be affected. Nasser drove three rallies with a Skoda run by Rene Georges at the start of the 2010 SWRC season before moving back to Ford in mid season. A VW spokesman stated: "We’ve got two Skoda Fabia S2000 that we’ll use this year for testing and learning. We’re preparing and entering the cars with our own team from Volkswagen Motorsport (which took the Dakar victories). As of today it́s not fixed which WRC events we will take part in and with which drivers.” VW to start WRC programme with a Skoda? Jorge Dorribo, patron of the imaginative Spanish motorsport project which ran the Ford Fiesta S2000 of reigning SWRC champion Xevi Pons, has been incarcerated in a wide-ranging police enquiry into sponsorship involving public moneys. Ironically, the Police enquiries were codenamed ‘Operacion Campeon’. Pons' 2010 successes came from the Nupel Rally Team, named after Dorribo's pharmaceutical company whose products included condoms. A week ago the Nupel Team announced that all their equipment including competition cars, had been sold to a team called RMC, run by the preparation company run by Roberto Mendez Cuervo. They had been closely involved in running all the Nupel competition cars, except for Pons' S2000 car. Pons is due to compete on the national championship Rias Baixas Rally on 4th June. Champion team patron in prison WRC argentina >>