The Hyundai Motorsport Driver development Program (HMDP) was introduced in 2017 as part of our growing presence in the rallying community to find and nurture the future World Rally stars.
Sitting alongside WRC and Customer Racing, based at our facility in Alzenau, Germany, the initiative is intended to help up-and-coming drivers to reach their individual potential.
We offer them support in all areas of development as they learn the techniques required to become a successful rally driver.
The first beneficiary of this new program was Chewon Lim (see our HMDP Crew section for more information), who was part of the scheme in 2017. His participation in the HMDP helped promote international rallying in his native South Korea, expanding the audience for the sport, while also demonstrating Hyundai’s motorsport image around the world.
In the second half of 2017 we intensified our activities, beginning the search for our next HMDP crew, with an in-depth selection process.
Initially, a group of 16 candidates was identified and invited to Hyundai Motorsport’s factory in Alzenau for a comprehensive assessment. The evaluation covered a range of criteria, including technical understanding, English language and PR skills, as well as communication with mechanics and engineers.
Eight drivers were then chosen to undertake three days of testing in France with the New Generation i20 R5 on both gravel and tarmac in September, from which the successful candidate was picked.
A panel of Hyundai Motorsport team management unanimously agreed on Finnish driver Jari Huttunen (see our HMDP Crew section for more information). Together with his co-driver Antti Linnaketo, Jari will compete under the HMDP umbrella in selected round of the WRC2 class in 2018, driving a New Generation i20 R5.