THE FIA WORLD RALLY CHAMPIONSHIP CALENDAR FOR 2016 HAS BEEN ANNOUNCED TODAY (TUESDAY) BY WRC PROMOTER.
The 14-round championship will begin with the traditional season-opening Rallye Monte-Carlo in January and will feature a mix of gravel, asphalt, snow and ice action across five continents.
Exciting innovations for 2016 are:
• Asia becomes the fifth continent to join the WRC with Rally China returning for the first time since 1999. The all-asphalt event will run as the 10th round on 9 – 11 September, based in the Huairou district just 70km from central Beijing. Huairou, which hosted the 1999 rally, benefited from huge investment ahead of the 2014 Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) meeting.
• Rally Australia will move from its September date in 2014 to end the championship on 18 – 20 November next year. It will be followed by a glamorous and high-profile gala finale to the season in Sydney.
• Rally GB will remain the final European fixture as the championship’s penultimate round. It will be based in Wales on 28 – 30 October, following the completion of Britain’s national rally calendar, preserving the likelihood of tricky late-year conditions which make the event so challenging.
Following this year’s successful inaugural event, celebrities from the worlds of sport and entertainment will kick-start the 2016 championship at a spectacular opening in Monaco immediately ahead of the start of Rallye Monte-Carlo.
WRC Promoter managing director Oliver Ciesla said the 2016 calendar offered a mix of tradition and innovation.
“It brings an enticing blend of the WRC’s heritage, in the form of classic and long-standing events such as Sweden, Argentina and Finland, with a new and exciting challenge on asphalt roads in China,” he said.
The 2016 calendar is:
|1.||Monte-Carlo*||22 – 24 January|
|2.||Sweden||12 – 14 February|
|3.||Mexico||4 – 6 March|
|4.||Argentina||22 – 24 April|
|5.||Portugal||20 – 22 May|
|6.||Italy||10 – 12 June|
|7.||Poland||1 – 3 July|
|8.||Finland||29 – 31 July|
|9.||Germany||19 – 21 August|
|10.||China**||9 – 11 September|
|11.||France*||30 September – 2 October|
|12.||Spain||14 – 16 October|
|13.||Great Britain||28 – 30 October|
|14.||Australia||18 – 20 November|
* Inclusion remains subject to formalisation of contracts with FIA and WRC Promoter
** Inclusion remains subject to fulfilment of FIA requirements after candidate event