What Kalle Rovanperä Moving To Part-Time Means For The WRC

November 22, 2023Joe Moore

Earlier this week it was announced Kalle Rovanperä would contest a part-time campaign in 2024. What could this mean for the WRC? Find out below.

A New Champion

Let’s get the obvious out of the way first. With Rovanperä only competing at select events he won’t be able to win the championship. Unless he competes at say 10 of the 13 events, which is something he sounds as if he doesn’t want to do. Meaning there will be a “new” champion in 2024. The term “new” is used loosely as Ott Tänak has a strong chance at winning another championship. Although his last and only title win came in 2019. The battle for the championship will likely be a three-horse race. As Hyundai drivers Ott Tänak and Thierry Neuville will battle it out with Elfyn Evans from Toyota. 

How It Benefits The WRC

There is a silver lining that makes the Rovanperä move to part-time a good one for the WRC. The part of this that benefits the WRC is basically the same thing as the above section. As a prolonged title fight equals more fan interest throughout the season. Fans don’t want to watch a title fight that they can guess the result of before the season even starts. Before Rovanperä, if you guessed Ogier or Loeb would win the championship, you were most likely correct. In 2024 we will get a taste of what it was like before the Sebastien domination. As before the mid-2000s the championship was pretty much anybody’s to win. 

Does Rovanperä Move To Part-Time Say Anything About The WRC

To be honest, no Rovanperä wanting a part-time drive next season doesn’t say much about the WRC. As Rovanperä had a very good reason for wanting to do a part-time drive. That reason being he has driven rally cars for the past 15 years with no real breaks. Like anyone when you do something for that long you get tired of it. Rovanperä also wants to explore other motorsports while he’s still young. He’s not really interested in chasing Loeb’s nine-championship record, or at least anytime soon. 

The Underlying Facts 

Kalle Rovanperä going to part-time isn’t necessarily a bad thing for the WRC. As if not only allows a new champion to be crowned. It also allows him a break to hopefully pursue rally into his late 30’s. At the end of the day, Rovanperä will be missed, however, if he needed a break he needed a break. For him why wait? He has nothing to lose. He’s the best driver in the WRC currently. A year off isn’t going to change that.