Three-time German national rally champion Dieter Depping is set to make his début in the FIA World Rallycross Championship at this autumn’s round eleven in Buxtehude, Germany, 29 September-1 October.
51-year-old Depping, three times German rally champion from 1992-1994, will take part in his home country’s second World RX round of the season at the wheel of a VW Polo Supercar, more specifically a third car to be entered by PSRX Volkswagen Sweden alongside their regular entries, double World Champion Petter Solberg and his Swedish team-mate and current Championship leader Johan Kristoffersson.
Besides rallying, Depping has also competed in cross-country rallies and circuit racing, and more recently, he spent a considerable amount of time developing Volkswagen Motorsport‘s Polo WRC. The German rally weapon won four consecutive World Rally Championship titles from 2013-2016 with France’s Sébastien Ogier at the wheel: following VW’s shock retirement from the WRC, some Polo chassis have been converted to Rallycross Supercar specifications, allowing Kristoffersson to not just win four out of eight rounds contested so far, but also to gain the Championship’s lead.
“When [VW] Motorsport Director Sven Smeets asked me if I could envisage starting at my home race in Buxtehude, I didn’t need to think about it for long,” Depping said.
“I’m really looking forward to the races at the Estering, but I also have a huge amount of respect for them – particularly the start. I will prepare well for the races and am already looking forward to the great setting at the Estering. My thanks also go to Petter Solberg’s team, who are taking me and my Polo under their wing for this competition.”
“Dieter Depping has done a valuable job for Volkswagen as a test driver and racing driver for many years now. He was part of the Dakar team, was involved in the development of countless racing cars and, last but not least, played a major role in Volkswagen bringing home a total of twelve world championship titles with the Polo R WRC,” said Sven Smeets.
“The start in Buxtehude is a way of thanking Dieter Depping for his fantastic work, but we are also delighted to have a local hero lining up at the rallycross highlight in Lower Saxony.”
Following their 1-2 finish in Canada at round eight, PSRX’s Kristoffersson and Solberg are looking to extend their Championship lead at next month’s ninth meeting of the season, 1-3 September in Lohéac, France.