The 2017 FIA World Rally Championship calendar has been announced today (Wednesday) by WRC Promoter.
The exciting new-era championship, which will feature greater manufacturer interest with the return of automotive giants Toyota and Citroën, comprises the same 13 rounds as the successful 2016 season.
It begins with the traditional season-opening Rallye Monte-Carlo in January and will feature a mix of gravel, asphalt snow and ice action on four continents before concluding in Australia in November.
The major changes are an earlier April date for France’s asphalt Tour de Corse, breaking up a series of seven consecutive loose surface fixtures, and a less crowded final quarter.
Each round will welcome for the first time a new generation of World Rally Cars. Dramatic new-look challengers boasting extra power, less weight, bigger rear wings and more noise will improve the roadside action for fans.
The calendar was approved by the FIA’s World Motor Sport Council meeting in Vienna and WRC Promoter managing director Oliver Ciesla said 2017 promised ‘excitement in abundance’.
“The 2016 season brought great unpredictability, with six different winners during the year,” he said. “Returning former world champion manufacturers will make 2017 bigger and better, and the sense of anticipation generated by the new cars means there is plenty for fans to look forward to.”
Ciesla said the season’s final months would be less hectic than the over-crowded period in the 2016 calendar.
“Despite strong efforts from all sides it wasn’t possible to include Turkey and China in the calendar next year, but all parties are eager to help that come to fruition in the future.
“As a result there are no rounds in September. Rather than restructure the calendar to close that gap, we decided to keep the entire month free to observe potential candidate events,” he added.
The 2017 calendar is:
|1.||Monte-Carlo||19 - 22 January|
|2.||Sweden||9 - 12 February|
|3.||Mexico||9 - 12 March|
|4.||France||6 - 9 April|
|5.||Argentina||27 - 30 April|
|6.||Portugal||18 - 21 May|
|7.||Italy||8 - 11 June|
|8.||Poland||29 June - 2 July|
|9.||Finland||27 - 30 July|
|10.||Germany||17 - 20 August|
|11.||Spain||5 - 8 October|
|12.||Great Britain||26 - 29 October|
|13.||Australia||16 - 19 November|