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  Home > Seasons > Season 2002
Boring or best
Many have said that 2002 was the best season before certain rule changes and team withdrawals spoiled international rallying. It is true that in certain respects WRC has gone downhill since 2002 but many critics forget how they complained about championship being boring with Peugeot's dominance. Memory of a man is so short.

Arguably, Peugeot 206WRC was on it's peak and Marcus hardly put his foot wrong. Championship indeed was one-horse race but there were exciting battles in lower ranks. Behind Gronholm, six drivers were within seven points and another good example was incredibly tight battle between minor teams of Hyundai, Skoda and Mitsubishi.

Instead of Portugal championship went to Germany for a first time. Otherwise calendar stayed the same even though event dates were suffled.

Cruising to title
Very early it became apparent that Peugeot and Gronholm were in a league of their own. Marcus' progress was a entirely different from his troublesome 2001 season, five wins and eleven points finishes meaning that in the end he scored more than twice as many points as the second placed Solberg.

Because Citroen was not eligible for manufacturers points Peugeot's life was made easier. That explains how it is possible for the team to score nine 1-2's even though Peugeot won only eight events.

Both juniors and Group N drivers now had proper championship title, Daniel Sola taking JWRC honors ahead of more experienced Andrea Dallavilla while Karamjit Singh vanguished Kristian Sohlberg in PWRC.

New cars
New cars? What new cars? That sums up the lack of exciting news in this area. All teams except Citroen debuted upgraded versions of their cars during the season but none were really radical.

The biggest news was a bombshell announcement from Mitsubishi who dropped out for sabbatical for 2003 in order to concentrate on complete overhaul of the team and car.

2002 champs
(Click picture to see larger version in a pop-up window)
2002 FIA World Rally Champions, Marcus Gronholm and Timo Rautiainen. Click picture to see larger version in a pop-up window
Drivers scoring their
first win
  S. Loeb (Deutschland)
  P. Solberg (Great Britain)
first drivers' point
  M. Higgins (Great Britain)
first stage win
  F. Duval (Cyprus)
  J. Paasonen (New Zealand)