Dakar: Carlos Sainz Sr. comes to Ford

Carlos Sainz Sr. has signed a contract with the Ford factory team and will compete in the 2025 Dakar Rally in the new Ford Ranger Raptor Ultimate racing SUV. The four-time Dakar winner will be one of four drivers of this team – it is already known that his partner will be Nani Roma, who has already completed this marathon in 2024 with a Ford Ranger T1+.

Later, the contracts of two more drivers will be officially confirmed – it is expected that these will be the Swede Mattias Ekström (like Sainz, who raced for the Audi factory team) and the American Mitch Guthrie.

Carlos Sainz has had a long relationship with Ford, since the beginning of his career in world rallying, and this was in the late 80’s, i.e. almost forty years ago he competed in Ford Sierra cars, although he later achieved his most important victories with the Toyota -factory team.

But in the late 1990s and early 2000s he returned to Ford twice and won several rallies in cars of this brand. Now Sainz is back as a factory driver for the Detroit-based company and the first tests of the new Ranger Raptor have already begun. The car’s debut in combat conditions is scheduled for October, when 62-year-old Carlos Sainz and his teammates will take the start of the Rally of Morocco.

“I am very excited about this new project related to Dakar,” said Sainz. “I’m going to work with Ford for the fourth time, I’m returning to the M-Sport team, which is led by Malcolm Wilson, who I know well, and this is great. The history of my relationship with Ford started in 1987. I think that was when I became the first driver of the factory team organized by Malcolm, and I am very proud of that. I’m looking forward to getting behind the wheel of the Raptor, I’m ready to take on the challenge and achieve great things. One of the goals is to help Ford win the Dakar rally.

Whether Ford will be able to achieve these ambitious plans remains to be seen. In any case, the company has already enlisted the support of experienced professionals: Nani Roma completed 27 Dakars, Carlos Sainz – 17.

But it is interesting that fans who commented on social networks about the news about Carlos Sainz Sr.’s contract. with Ford immediately saw signs of his son’s upcoming transfer to the Red Bull Racing team, which is also preparing for a new period in his career. history, when its new technological This American company will become a partner.

However, similar assumptions have long been made about the Audi project in Formula 1, and the logic there is the same: since Sainz Sr. has excellent relations with this German company, there is a good chance that his son Carlos can also sign a contract. contract with his future factory team. But for now, Sainz Jr. remains. drives for Ferrari and prefers not to talk about his future plans.

Source: F1 News

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