ERC cal­en­dar is short on top events

Motor Sport News - - Rally News -

Next year’s Euro­pean Rally Cham­pi­onship has been re­vealed, with three of its most pop­u­lar rounds miss­ing.

A pro­vi­sional 10-round 2017 sched­ule has been an­nounced, with only eight named ral­lies and three of the 10 have still to com­plete their agree­ment with the se­ries pro­moter.

The Cir­cuit of Ireland, Ypres and Es­to­nia are the events miss­ing from next year. The Rally di Roma Cap­i­tale re­places one of the three. MN un­der­stands the Ypres Rally could yet make it to the cal­en­dar, if Eurosport Events can find agree­ment with the or­gan­is­ers of the Bel­gian clas­sic.

Ypres man­ager Alain Pe­nasse told MN: “I don’t agree with the fee you have to pay to be in the ERC be­cause the value of the ERC has been go­ing down in re­cent years. We have a pro­posal from Eurosport which, while it was bet­ter than last year, it’s still too much. At the mo­ment, we’re in the far­ci­cal po­si­tion of them want­ing this num­ber and us of­fer­ing that num­ber. And they have a cal­en­dar that has two dates with no ral­lies.

“We don’t say ‘no’ to ERC, there’s still some pride in be­ing part of the Euro­pean cham­pi­onship, but there’s a gap be­tween what they think it’s worth and what I think it’s worth. We have de­cided to go our way with the Bri­tish Rally Cham­pi­onship and the new Tour Euro­pean Rally. We don’t know what the TER will bring, but at least it doesn’t cost us any­thing.”

The pro­posed ERC 2017 sched­ule is: Azores Rally (March 2-4); TBA (March 31-April 2); Ca­naries Rally (May 4-6); Acrop­o­lis Rally (June 2-4); Cyprus Rally (June 16-18); Rally Rzes­zow (Au­gust 3-5); Rally Zlin (Au­gust 25-27); Rally di Roma Cap­i­tale (Septem­ber 15-17); Rally Liepaja (Oc­to­ber 6-8) and TBA (Novem­ber 3-5).

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