Third world rally championship success for Suzuki
Suzuki has claimed its third Junior World Rally Championship (JWRC) title in seven years after a dramatic finish to Rally de Espana in its Suzuki Swift Sport.
Talented young German ace Aaron Burkart looked to have his JWRC dreams dashed on Saturday night after a crash, but the proven reliability of his Swift Sport shone through on Sunday to give him his first JWRC driver’s title.
Arch rival Hans Weijs – who was in the box seat for the race and the title after Burkart’s mishap on Saturday – could only watch as the never-say-die Suzuki star passed his broken down Citroen on Sunday.
Burkart’s fourth position and 12-point yield was enough to secure him the championship by four points in one of the most tightly contested JWRC events in memory.
Burkart’s teenage team-mate, Karl Kruuda, was denied the chance to secure third position in the championship after being denied a permit to drive by the Spanish authorities due to his age.
The triumph added to the two JWRC titles won by former Suzuki star Per-Gunnar Andersson in 2004 and 2007.
The 2010 season marks the end of a glittering era for the Suzuki Sport team, which will join Monster Sport Europe in the UK from 2011 as part of the new WRC Academy series.