Toyota’s Kalle Rovanpera, who is a double world rally champion, will be taking a break next season after reaching a multi-year agreement with the Japanese manufacturer. Rovanpera, from Finland, became the youngest world rally champion at the age of 22 and won a second successive crown this season. In a statement on Monday, he stated that he will only be driving some of the events next year and the main reason is that he has been driving rally cars for 15 years. He expressed that the previous seasons have been demanding both mentally and physically and he felt it is a good moment to take a year off to recharge and come back to fight for the championship once more.
During his break, Rovanpera plans to do some drifting and other forms of motorsport. Sebastien Ogier, an eight-time world champion from France, will also continue part-time with the Toyota manufacturer. The full-time drivers for 2024 will be Welshman Elfyn Evans and Japan’s Takamoto Katsuta. Evans has been a runner-up three times in the last four years and he stated that he is keen to build on his progress and be even better in the next season. This was reported by Alan Baldwin in London and edited by Ken Ferris.