The Ford squad confirmed the first part of their driver roster for 2022 last week after part-time Hyundai driver Craig Breen signed a two-year, full-time contract.
Bree’s arrival leaves two places vacant as the British team intends to expand to three full-time entrants with their brand new Rally1 hybrid Ford Puma.
M-Sport has been an active player in the driver market this season and openly admitted to having spoken to several drivers, including nine-time world champion Sebastien Loeb, for a 2022 campaign.
While several names have emerged, Millener has hinted that its current drivers Adrien Fourmaux and Gus Greensmith are likely to keep it.
French aspiring star Fourmaux was widely expected to keep his seat as he played a pivotal role in the development of the Puma and it appears Greensmith is now the favorite to stay with the team for the next year, though it still is does not need to be confirmed.
Ford Puma WRC Rally1
Photo by: WRC.com
“We’re making good progress, to be honest, we didn’t mean to rush anything, but it’s not the hardest problem to solve who we’re likely to end up with,” said Millener.
“There is no rush to do anything and we still have these final events on asphalt to see where we stand.
“We know that the car is competitive here in Spain and we know that the lads Adrien and Gus can achieve good results on asphalt.
“We’d love to see how it goes but will announce in due course, but I don’t think there will be any shocks. Officially, we don’t have to rush anything.
“There are some things we are working on behind the scenes that could change the way we act or the way we do it. It [the announcement] will come, but not quite yet. “
Greensmith revealed at the Rally Spain team’s media briefing that his plans for the next year are secure, but have remained silent about what they entail.
“There’s not much to say right now,” said Greensmith. “I know what I’m doing, but I’m just more focused on making as many improvements as possible on the next two roads this year and then after Monza I can start thinking about next year.
“It’s not bad,” he added when asked if he was happy with the plans.
This weekend’s event in Spain, however, will be the Briton’s last with co-driver Chris Patterson, with a decision on his replacement at the Monza rally finale next month pending.
Sebastian Loeb, X44
Photo by: Sam Bagnall / Motorsport Images
M-Sport has also confirmed that talks with Loeb about a possible WRC comeback in part of the season have not progressed.
Suggestions that the Frenchman might return to the WRC surfaced mid-season when M-Sport confirmed it had had talks with Loeb, who is currently involved in the Dakar Rally and Extreme E.
“There are a lot of barriers to doing something with Seb and at the moment we can’t say whether or not something is going to happen,” added Millener.
“It would be nice, but for now we’re focusing on other avenues and sorting out what we do for the year between Adrien and Gus and Craig and see how we can best do that.
“Of course there is significant investment to get things going over the next year, and we have to set it all up first before we look at anything else.”
M-Sport previously stated that it would like to post customers Puma listings in the next season, which could offer an option for Loeb.