Thu 02 Nov 2023

Reset time as Llarena looks to ERC 2024

Efrén Llarena is planning “to do a reset” in order to come back stronger in next season’s FIA European Rally Championship.

The Spaniard began 2023 as the defending ERC champion following a standout 2022 campaign with Team MRF Tyres.  

Although a podium on Rally Islas Canarias, the second event of the season, offered hope, Llarena was unable to return to the top three on the remaining six rounds and ended his title defence fourth in the standings.  

Speaking on Rally Hungary last month, the 28-year-old talent said: “It’s been a disaster of a season for us. We saw some speed in some rallies, but there were some mistakes. We did a really good job in Barum with the old car, we were fighting, especially in the second day. Now it’s time to do a reset and find the support for next year.”

Llarena, who is co-driven by Sara Fernández, is intent on undertaking a fifth season in the ERC’s top level in 2024.  

“For sure I will try to be in the ERC,” the former Junior ERC champion said. “We need to speak with the sponsors but this is target. However, it’s clear we need to come with a completely full package. The guys are really fast so if you have a little bit less power, or less performance in something then it’s a problem.”

Llarena completed the ERC’s 70th anniversary season by finishing 10th among the ERC drivers on Rally Hungary after he was forced to change a damaged wheel on the event’s third stage. His performance on day two put him sixth in the leg classification after he set two top-five stage times in his 2019-specification Škoda Fabia R5.  

“At least we enjoyed the final day,” Llarena said. “We try our best and we had a small fight with [Mathieu] Franceschi too, which was nice.”

Starts: Thursday, July 18, 2024 at 4:31:00 AM
Starts: Friday, July 26, 2024 at 7:00:00 AM
Starts: Saturday, July 27, 2024 at 6:00:00 AM