M-Sport


M-Sport

Infobox Company
company_name = M-Sport
company_
company_type = Privately held company
foundation = 1979
location = Cockermouth, England
key_people = Malcolm Wilson "(founder)"
industry = Motorsport
Automotive engineering
products =
subsid =
homepage = [http://www.m-sport.co.uk m-sport.co.uk]

M-Sport is a large and successful motorsport team based in Cockermouth, Cumbria in England. Formed in 1979 by former WRC driver Malcolm Wilson, and originally known as "Malcolm Wilson Motorsport", the team has had varying success running cars in several rally championships. Since 1996, "M-Sport" has prepared and run the official Ford World Rally Team cars in the World Rally Championship.

History

Following the career of Malcolm Wilson as a driver, the company grew steadily through the 1980s, with rapid expansion in the early 1990s reflecting the success that the company was having throughout the world with the Ford Escort RS Cosworth.

In 1994, the team won national titles in Italy, Portugal, the Middle East, and indeed the British Rally Championship with Malcolm Wilson himself behind the wheel of the Escort.

World Rally Championship

At the end of 1996, Ford Motorsport selected the company to spearhead the Ford team's entry for the 1997 World Rally Championship season with the new derivative of the Ford Escort WRC. Victories in Greece and Indonesia saw faith in the small team rewarded, and they went on to finish runner-up in the manufacturers' championship.

By the middle of 1998, Ford chose M-Sport to design and build the new Ford Focus WRC. The new car appeared in 1999 with a new driver—Colin McRae—and immediately sprang to the attention of the world press by recording fastest stage times on its first event, the Monte Carlo Rally; however, the two cars entered were excluded from the event due to a vehicle weight infringement. By the third event—the notoriously gruelling Safari Rally in Kenya—the team had scored their first WRC victory. A month later, an on-form Colin McRae made it two in a row at the Rally of Portugal.

With a move to new premises at Dovenby Hall, "M-Sport" expanded rapidly, becoming a world leader in motorsport and employing over 170 people. Their hard work led to the culmination of their successes in 2006, when the Wilson-led Ford team took the manufacturers' World Rally championship title; [http://www.m-sport.co.uk/company_profile.html M-Sport ] ] it was the first time Ford had achieved this feat in 25 years of competing.

For the 2008 season, the company employs the driving talents of Mikko Hirvonen and Jari-Matti Latvala in their challenge for the World Rally Championship.

Privateer teams

Beside the official Ford cars, the team also runs three cars on behalf of the Stobart VK Ford Rally Team. [http://www.m-sport.co.uk/company_profile.html M-Sport ] ] Matthew Wilson, Henning Solberg and Gigi Galli are the three drivers competing in 2008.

Argentinian team Munchi's Ford World Rally Team also entrusts the preparation and running of its two cars to M-Sport. [http://www.m-sport.co.uk/company_profile.html M-Sport ] ] The two drivers employed for the 2008 WRC season are Luís Pérez Companc and Federico Villagra.

Other series

The company also runs the one-make Fiesta Sporting Trophy rally series, which it launched in 2006, and the Fiesta Sporting Trophy International (FSTi) series. [ [http://www.fiestasportingtrophy.com/ :: Ford Fiesta Sporting Trophy :: ] ] [http://www.m-sport.co.uk/company_profile.html M-Sport ] ] [ [http://www.fiestasportingtrophy.com/aboutFST.asp#downloads :: Ford Fiesta Sporting Trophy :: ] ]

References

External links

* [http://www.m-sport.co.uk Official M-Sport website]
* [http://www.ford.co.uk/ie/wrc/-/motor_intro/-/-/-/- Ford Motorsport website]
* [http://www.stobartmotorsport.com/wrc_index.asp Stobart Motorsport WRC team website]


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