This year's Rally Germany was notable for a huge scrap for the lead that was settled on the final stage – but I was just as taken by what was happening a bit further back.
In the WRC2 division – the championship’s second tier for slightly less powerful cars – there was a huge fight between Robert Kubica and Elfyn Evans. It was a bit surreal: as editor of Motorsport News, I’ve been involved in reporting on and covering both of them for years, but it was hard to comprehend reporting on them both at the same time.
Kubica is the Formula One race winner who was poised to become a star of the sport until he was seriously injured in a huge accident on a rally early in February 2011. Evans, meanwhile, is a garage owner’s son from Dolgellau in mid Wales.
Before their WRC2 battles this year, Kubica and Evans had previously existed in two different worlds, from two spectrums of the sport so far apart they were barely related. Now their futures are entwined: both will drive Ford Fiesta WRCs run by the top M-Sport team in next year’s WRC. And while both have taken very different routes to the top level of rallying, both fully deserve their chance.
Recovering from his crash, Kubica was keen to prove his injuries wouldn’t keep him out of motorsport, and he chose to do so in rallying. He made his competitive return in September 2012 on a club rally in Italy. He won.