After seven years on the west coast, Italy’s gravel round of the FIA World Rally Championship will swap sides for 2021.
That’s not to say Alghero won’t be included in this year’s itinerary. Following the 2.76km shakedown at Loiri Porto San Paolo close to Olbia, the cars cross the Mediterranean island to Alghero where the picturesque town hosts the ceremonial start on the Thursday evening.
The crews remain in town overnight before heading off for the first day’s action on Friday morning. From then on, the cars will return to service at Olbia’s waterside Molo Brin area.
Video: Rally Italia Sardegna review
The competitive action for the first two days remains largely unchanged with all Sardinia’s favourites featured, like the legendary Monte Lerno, test which includes the iconic Micky’s Jump.
Su Filigosu - Monte Lerno opens proceedings on Friday and, at 22.19km, is the rally’s longest test. The leg also features the Terranova and Erula - Tula tests while Saturday includes the well-known Coiluna - Loelle and Monte Lerno - Monti di Ala’.
Sunday is, however, based closer to Olbia and new for this generation of drivers. Arzachena - Braniatogghiu last saw WRC action in 2005, while the Aglientu - Rena Majore test, a classic from Costa Smeralda Rallies of old, is new to the WRC.
The second run of the 7.44km Aglientu - Rena Majore forms the bonus points-paying Wolf Power Stage and offers a spectacular view of the Sardinian landscape.
Friday and Saturday will adopt a morning and afternoon split, with two stages run and repeated before lunchtime service and two new stages driven twice after lunch.
The rally comprises 20 stages covering 305.32km.
The full itinerary can be viewed here.