Francois Delecour's sacking by Peugeot, and the row over the use of specialist drivers for 2001 has cast a few new names into the hat at Castrol's rally team.

Delecour is joined by another tarmac expert in the reckoning to partner one or other of the two existing drivers at MSD's works effort, as Piero Liatti seeks to kickstart his WRC career on the back of a couple of good outings for Ford this year. Hyundai has admitted on more than one occasion that it is looking to boost its asphalt performance in 2001, and either driver would be seen as a valuable addition to the squad.

It is unlikely that both will wind up in the Accent next year, however, even though neither Alister McRae or Kenneth Eriksson has yet signed an extension to their current deal. The sensible money is on the Scot staying put for another season, with Eriksson perhaps taking on a development and occasional event role, similar to that put in front of Juha Kankkunen at Subaru. This would then allow the team to employ a tarmac specialist alongside McRae, with the aim of making Hyundai competitive on all surfaces.

Of the two, Delecour remains the favourite for the drive in many eyes, given that he enjoyed an impromptu test in the Accent when MSD turned up in his back yard prior to the Corsica and San Remo rallies this year. His notorious temperament may yet count against him, however, with the more placid Liatti perhaps a more stable option for the developing team.