POLAND ORGANISERS CONFIDENT OF 2017 CALENDAR SLOT
Rally Poland organisers are confident of retaining their World Rally Championship place – despite the FIA’S lingering concerns over spectator safety on the event.
The Mikolajki-based rally was running under a ‘yellow card’ warning from the sport’s governing body after failures in spectator safety last season. WRC safety delegate Michele Mouton drove every stage on the route and wasn’t entirely happy with what she saw.
She told MN: “Following the preliminary inspection, the rally has been very well prepared with lots of dedicated zones for spectators. Unfortunately, they were not all respected so there is still some work to be done.”
Clerk of the course Jaroslaw Noworol said: “I spoke with Michele Mouton and she said it was much better than last year. Of course sometimes there were spectators standing in the area where they should not, but from their point of view, everything was OK. The start of three stages were delayed, but only by a few minutes. And we think it’s better to stop the stage and start when things are in order.”
On the future, Noworol added: “I hope to be in WRC again next year, we wait for the reports from the stakeholders and the WRC Promoter – this is the crucial one.”
Last week’s event was the third of a three-year deal. WRC Promoter’s Oliver Ciesla said: “The contract for this event has reached the end of its normal cycle. We are talking. The drivers’ [positive] feelings towards the roads are good and there’s a high number of fans, which is a big thing with or without Robert Kubica. There’s not much more to say for now.”