25 Jun 09
The chief executive of WRC promoters ISC explains more about the new sporting regulations:
What is the rationale behind a 13 event WRC Calendar for 2010?
"The 2010 calendar is a combination of nine events which had previously been confirmed by the FIA plus four other events, Finland, Spain, GB and Portugal, thereby extending the calendar from 12 to 13 events. The good news is that there are no losers from the previously published calendar which has now been further reinforced with four quality events, proposed by ISC".
How will WRC calendars be proposed in the future?
"In drawing up our future calendar recommendations, the overriding focus will be on quality as we look to combine the world's best drivers and cars with the best events. That means quality not only in terms of a well run event but also in the way events are marketed and promoted in the interests of spectators, viewers, the media, car manufacturers and commercial partners. As Championship Promoter, ISC will be working with all of the sport's stakeholders to raise the bar for how WRC is staged and showcased to an increasingly global community of fans. ISC will be submitting a proposal for the 2011 WRC calendar for the FIA's approval before the end of 2009".
Will ISC's agreements with events only be on an annual basis?
"This will not be a one-size-fits-all approach. We recognise the need for everyone involved in building a healthy and sustainable WRC to have some forward visibility. Thus, we will be entering into multi-year Events agreements with a number of core events in order to give stability and allow appropriate planning with key parties such as sponsors, broadcasters and local government to everyone's advantage".
What are the promotional benefits of introducing the 1600cc turbo engine in 2011?
"This brings WRC in line with the way the automotive industry and public opinion is moving towards more energy efficient engines. At the same time, this will further support our efforts to attract new manufacturers and car brands into our sport with the prospect of more cost effective and relevant WRC car regulations".
What are the advantages of giving event Organisers more flexibility over the design of their events?
"The beauty of going to so many distinctive and spectacular locations around the world is the unique character which each event can bring to the Championship and how we promote it. We need to make more of a virtue of the sheer variety of experience and geographical reach which WRC can offer. By allowing Organisers more flexibility over the make-up of their event we anticipate being able to connect with a wider landscape of communities, places and fans. The prospect of mixed surfaces will only add to the unpredictability and challenge which characterises the sport of rallying."
How will the introduction in 2010 of a 'WRC Cup' for Super 2000 cars help?
"This is great news. With the WRC regulations set to shift to a Super 2000 car in 2011 this is a good way of attracting manufacturers, teams and privateers into WRC at an affordable and competitive level. This also offers the chance to sample WRC ahead of potentially taking the step up to the highest level of the sport. We will be undertaking a number of media and marketing initiatives to showcase the series globally and integrate it within the overall promotion of WRC."