WITH the 2015 World Rally Championship (WRC) having begun with its traditional Monte Carlo Rally curtain raiser last weekend, the countdown is on until the thirteenth and final round – Wales Rally GB.

With a short off-season since the championship finished on 16th November, the race to the title is set to take in all surfaces and weathers around the globe before finishing in the gravel-surfaced forests of Wales.

Welsh driver Elfyn Evans and British driver Kris Meeke will be looking to score enough points in the snow packed stages of Sweden, dust tracks of Australia and asphalt roads of Germany before returning to home turf for some world class rallying.

With strong showings last year, Evans, whose father is former British Rally Champion and WRC driver Gwyndaf, and Meeke have established themselves as some of the fastest names in the business.

They are up against some tough competition none the less as last year's champion Sebastian Ogier looks to keep hold of his title, and he is joined by the likes of ex-Formula 1 driver Robert Kubica and last year's runner-up Jari-Matti Latvala.

Throw into the mix the occasional return of WRC legend Sebastien Loeb – who won nine consecutive titles before retiring in 2013 – to events such as the classic Monte Carlo and competition will be tough.

2015 will only be Evan's second full WRC season and he continues with the M-Sport World Rally team in a Ford Fiesta RS WRC.

Meeke, who was spotted and mentored by Colin McRae, has been handed an uprated Citroen DS 3 WRC to compete in after a full season with the same team last year.

Neither driver has won a WRC event to date, in fact there hasn't been a British winner since 2002, but both are in prime positions with both of their teams to go chasing the top step of the podium – possibly at Wales Rally GB.

The dates have been confirmed for the home round of the championship as 12th - 15th November with full route details yet to be announced.