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News
EIGHT IS GREAT AGAIN FOR ERC IN 2020
18.10.2019

18/10/2019

*New FIA European Rally Championship calendar runs from March to November
*Experience optimised with perfect balance of asphalt and gravel rallies
*Czech round reverts to traditional late August date for half-century celebrations
*Cyprus Rally back to October following late September run in 2019

The FIA European Rally Championship will continue to follow its successful format in 2020 with confirmation of an eight-event schedule including four rounds on asphalt and four on gravel. Made up of the same eight rallies that formed the 2019 calendar, the list of dates for next season has been approved by the FIA Rally Commission and was ratified by the FIA World Motor Sport Council during an electronic vote.

“The 2020 calendar has been published today, and we see Rally Liepāja as Round 3 of it. While it is a great honour to be inlcuded in the mix of eight, I have to emphasise the asteriks next to our name, meaning, that our place is very much provisional as we still have to sign a promoter agreement with Eurosport Events. An agreement, whose signage relies much upon the Latvian Government and the funding required for license fee of the event. While I hope that Rally  Liepāja retains it place, as of now I cannot give any promises,” RA Events director Raimonds Strokšs.

The 2020 ERC calendar is confirmed as follows:
Round 1: Azores Rallye (gravel), 26-28 March
Round 2: Rally Islas Canarias (asphalt), 7-9 May
Round 3: Rally Liepāja (Latvia, gravel), 29-31 May**
Round 4: 77th Rally Poland (gravel), 26-28 June
Round 5: Rally di Roma Capitale (asphalt), 24-26 July
Round 6: Barum Czech Rally Zlín (asphalt), 28-30 August
Round 7: Cyprus Rally (gravel), 9-11 October
Round 8: Rally Hungary (asphalt), 6-8 November
**Subject to the signing of the event promoter agreement

Atlantic adventure up first for ERC aces
Two Atlantic Ocean island rallies will open the 2020 ERC schedule starting with the gravel-based Azores Rallye in late March followed by the asphalt-only Rally Islas Canarias in May.

High-speed Baltic blast on gravel
It’s all-gravel and all-speed for the third and fourth rounds of the new season. Following Rally Liepāja** in western Latvia, the Masuria lake district hosts the 77th Rally Poland with both flat-out events again running in late May and late June respectively.

Tarmac titans to shine through in Italy
Italy’s capital will play a key role in the ERC for the fourth time with the Tarmac-based Rally di Roma Capitale occupying its now familiar July date.

Big celebrations as Barum Czech Rally Zlín turns 50
Barum Czech Rally Zlín will return to its traditional late August slot for the 50th running of this asphalt classic, one of many highlights of the 2020 ERC season.

The heat is on in Cyprus
ERC drivers get to battle demanding gravel stages and the searing Mediterranean heat when the Cyprus
Rally forms the penultimate event of the title chase.

Hungary for asphalt
Rally Hungary, which joins the ERC roster for the first time next month (8-10 November), will continue as the season-closing round in 2020 using Tarmac stages in the north-eastern city of Nyíregyháza.

 

ERC1 Junior and ERC3 Junior decided over six events
The FIA ERC1 Junior Championship and FIA ERC3 Junior Championship will once again be decided over
six rounds in 2020 as follows:
Round 1: Azores Rallye (gravel), 26-28 March
Round 2: Rally Islas Canarias (asphalt), 7-9 May
Round 3: Rally Liepāja (Latvia, gravel), 29-31 May**
Round 4: 77th Rally Poland (gravel), 26-28 June
Round 5: Rally di Roma Capitale (asphalt), 24-26 July
Round 6: Barum Czech Rally Zlín (asphalt), 28-30 August
**Subject to the signing of the event promoter agreement

 

Q&A: Jean-Baptiste Ley, ERC Co-ordinator

Q: The ERC will again be decided over eight rounds in 2020. But why not add more events, especially when Corsica and Catalunya have dropped out of the world championship schedule?
A: “We consult our drivers and teams every season and the underlying wish is to respect budgetary and time concerns. Eight remains the preferred number of rallies and we are very happy with the events we work with. There was no reason to change a winning formula.”

Q: What does the calendar offer drivers, particularly those who are stepping up from national to international level?
A: “First and foremost we offer eight well organised events all with their own unique appeal and challenge. There is an equal split of asphalt and gravel rallies, which is perfect for building experience of different surfaces. By scheduling the events from March to November, costs can be spread throughout the year.”

Q: Will teams benefit from travel support to attend the island rallies next season?
A: “Arrangements are being made with the organisers of the Azores Rallye, Rally Islas Canarias and the Cyprus Rally to provide logistical support once again. More details will be announced in due course.”

Q: There will again be a focus on young talent through the two ERC Junior championships. What’s the plan for 2020?
A: “ERC1 Junior will continue to cater for young stars in R5 cars with ERC3 Junior for rising talents in R2 machinery on Pirelli tyres. Soon we’ll announce details of the prize packages on offer in 2020.”

Q: Not wishing to single out one event but Barum Czech Rally Zlín turns 50 in 2020. What do you think of this achievement?
A: “The ERC has enjoyed a long and very successful relationship with the organisers of Barum Czech Rally Zlín. The month of August is always eagerly anticipated and every year we look forward to and enjoy a great welcome and plenty of on-stage action. In addition to being well managed, the event is extremely popular among our registered drivers and teams, who take part in great number each season. We extend our congratulations to the Barum Czech Rally Zlín organising team for reaching this impressive milestone.”

©FIAERC.com