Latvia in talks to make late addition to WRC calendar

The organiser of Latvia’s World Rallycross Championship round, RA Events, is in talks with the World Rally Championship Promoter about hosting a round of the WRC this year.

Latvia in talks to make late addition to WRC calendar

RA Events organises and promotes Rally Liepaja, a round of the European Rally Championship, which has been postponed this year until August 14-16.

Following the latest cancellations of WRC rounds in Finland, New Zealand and Great Britain, due to issues surrounding the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, WRC Managing Director Oliver Ciesla confirmed recently that the series could adopt rallies into the 2020 schedule that are not usually a part of the WRC roster.

RA Events Director Raimonds Strokss is now in talks with the WRC Promoter about the feasibility of including the WRC in Rally Liepaja.

“RA Events and WRC Promoter held the first round of talks on Monday, where we discussed multiple organisational aspects, terms and conditions, and many other topics that need to be covered for Latvia to host a FIA World Rally Championship round alongside a round of the FIA ERC,” said Strokss.

“I want to emphasize that this is just a first round of talks and neither of the parties are close to the final decisions on this matter.”

Latvia has hosted a round of the World Rallycross Championship at the Bikerneiki Circuit in Riga since 2016, and is regarded as one of the best events to have joined the series since its inception in 2014.

Now supported by the country’s capital city, the Riga World RX event is set to take place this September as part of the revised World RX 2020 calendar.

Strokss says that all of Rally Liepaja’s partners will need to be involved if it will be possible for the country to host a second World Championship event this year.

“This will be a very challenging task as there is less than two months until the set event date,” he said.

“We will invite our partners – the Government of Latvia, our rally cities Liepaja and Talsi – to a discussion, in order to evaluate all the organisational workload, financial conditions and other aspects of the proposal. Only by working together and at a very rapid pace, can we find a solution to host a FIA WRC round in Latvia alongside the FIA ERC.”

The event has also stated that following any commitment to host the WRC in Latvia, agreement will need to be reached with Eurosport Events, a founding partner of Rally Liepaja since 2013, to manage the best interests of the European series and its competitors already committed to competing.

“Following the approach by WRC Promoter to Eurosport Events and RA Events regarding the possible inclusion of Rally Liepaja in the FIA World Rally Championship for 2020 as a joint event with FIA ERC in mid-August, we support the idea and would trust our local promoter to run such an event,"  Francois Ribeiro, Head of Eurosport Events said.

"Unprecedented times call for unprecedented measures and clearly we will do all we can to help the rally community and the FIA World Rally Championship through this difficult period, in a way which would protect ERC drivers and teams.

"The WRC is on a totally different organisational scale to the ERC, so there is not much time to raise incremental budgets and adapt the current format.

"Should RA Events be in position to cope with the WRC/ERC financial equation, I have no doubt we would find operational solutions with WRC Promoter and the Latvian organiser to put on such an event.”

Cyril Raymond, GCK Academy, Reinis Nitiss, GRX Taneco

Cyril Raymond, GCK Academy, Reinis Nitiss, GRX Taneco

Photo by: FIA World Rallycross

shares
comments
Toyota decides against debuting GR Yaris in WRC next year
Previous article

Toyota decides against debuting GR Yaris in WRC next year

Next article

Meeke could get a career lifeline in form of Pirelli role

Meeke could get a career lifeline in form of Pirelli role
Load comments
How WRC legend Ogier will be remembered by his peers Prime

How WRC legend Ogier will be remembered by his peers

After winning his eighth WRC title, Sebastien Ogier has drawn the curtain on his full-time rallying career. To understand Ogier's legacy, many of his former rivals, team-mates and colleagues have shared their thoughts on a vastly successful career

WRC
Nov 26, 2021
Ranking lost WRC legend Richard Burns' 10 best rallies Prime

Ranking lost WRC legend Richard Burns' 10 best rallies

Richard Burns was a determined driver who took on the best rally drivers in the world during a boom period in the early 2000s, and beat them. On the 20th anniversary of his crowning glory in winning the 2001 WRC title, and 16 years on from his death on the same date, we pick out his 10 greatest drives

WRC
Nov 25, 2021
The internal focus that made Burns a legendary world rally champion Prime

The internal focus that made Burns a legendary world rally champion

At the turn of the millennium, WRC was full to the brim with rallying's great and good - and 20 years ago on this day, Richard Burns became England's first world rally champion. Although Burns' natural talent drove him to the top, his steely determination and mental strength was the key attribute behind his title-winning form

WRC
Nov 25, 2021
How Ogier emerged from Loeb's shadow to form his own WRC legend Prime

How Ogier emerged from Loeb's shadow to form his own WRC legend

OPINION: Adding an eighth WRC title to his name, Sebastien Ogier has bowed out from full-time rallying in style. Having been compared throughout his career with nine-time champion Sebastien Loeb, Ogier has convincingly demonstrated that he can stand on his own as one of the greatest rally drivers in history

WRC
Nov 22, 2021
How confronting self-doubt drove Ogier to become a WRC legend Prime

How confronting self-doubt drove Ogier to become a WRC legend

This weekend's Rally Monza marks the end of an era in the World Rally Championship, as Sebastien Ogier prepares to bring down the curtain on his full-time career with an eighth title. For all his enduring success, the Toyota driver reveals in an exclusive interview that lingering insecurities have compelled his quest for perfection

WRC
Nov 18, 2021
The third generation McRae on his way to the WRC Prime

The third generation McRae on his way to the WRC

The McRae family name is steeped in rallying history, with eight British titles between Jimmy, Colin and Alister - plus the small matter of the 1995 WRC title too. Next on the conveyor of talent is Alister's 17-year-old Max McRae, who’s setting out in Australia to conquer the world of rallying and return the famous name to the WRC...

WRC
Nov 12, 2021
Inside Hyundai’s radical approach to prepare for the WRC hybrid era Prime

Inside Hyundai’s radical approach to prepare for the WRC hybrid era

As the World Rally Championship undergoes its biggest shift in regulations for a generation, teams are taking radical measures to prepare for its new era. Hyundai's unique approach involved conducting a private 1500km rally in Italy and Motorsport.com went to see how the team is preparing for 2022

WRC
Nov 4, 2021
How Neuville stole the show from Ogier vs Evans slugfest in Spain Prime

How Neuville stole the show from Ogier vs Evans slugfest in Spain

While all pre-event chat focused on the two World Rally Championship title fighters, their closest challenger charged into the spotlight on Rally Spain. Thierry Neuville's star turn and another strong drive from Elfyn Evans in his fight with Sebastien Ogier made for an intriguing event as the 2021 campaign nears its crunch point

WRC
Oct 18, 2021