top of page
  • Writer's pictureDrew Bentham

ERC comes to Wales for the first time in 28 years

Updated: Nov 24, 2023



JDS Machinery Rali Ceredigion (Wales) has today been confirmed as a round of the 2024 FIA European Rally Championship (ERC). It will also be the first time the UK has hosted a round of a top-tier FIA championship since Wales Rally GB last took place in October 2019, just one month after Rali Ceredigion was first run and the first time back in Wales in 28 years. The WRC Promoter has revealed a significantly revamped calendar for next season, with three events on gravel and five on asphalt spread geographically across the continent.


Rally representatives met with the ERC promoter during the summer to discuss detailed operating requirements and procedures. Subsequently, the 2023 event was observed by FIA officials, their report endorsing Rali Ceredigion as a worthy candidate for ERC inclusion in 2024.


Phil Pugh, Chairman of the JDS Machinery Rali Ceredigion organising team, said:

“This is fantastic news, not just for us as organisers but for everyone involved with the event, in particular our local stakeholders and commercial partners. We would certainly not be in this position if it hadn’t been for their invaluable support.
“We are extremely proud to be accepted as a round of such a high-profile and long-standing international championship that will generate increased returns around tourism, economic benefit and global exposure for Ceredigion and the wider region. Each year, we have strived to innovate and drive our event forward – and becoming a round of the ERC fulfils one of our key ambitions.
“As organisers, we were inspired to do what was needed to restore the UK’s place on a major international rally calendar. In doing so, it provides UK competitors in the supporting domestic championships a chance to pitch themselves against a top-class overseas field and of course, brings a wealth of commercial benefits and opportunities to the region.”

Rali Ceredigion is the only rally in the UK to achieve 2 Star FIA Environmental Accreditation, thanks to its work surrounding the sustainability of the event and its carbon reduction credentials.



Meirion Evans & Jonathan Jackson flying on the 2022 running
Meirion Evans & Jonathan Jackson flying on the 2022 running

The rest of the calendar remains mostly unchanged with Royal Rally of Scandinavia, Rally Islas Canarias and Rally di Roma Capitale once again playing host. The 2024 season kicks off in Rally Hungary on April 12th. The other new events to the calendar are Rally Estonia and Rally Silesia in Poland. The season once again looking to serve up the best rally action in 2024.


2024 ERC Calendar (Source www.FIAERC.com)


Rally Hungary, 12 - 14 April (gravel)

Having run on asphalt since its inception in 2019, Rally Hungary will be gravel only in 2024 with the event relocating to the city of Veszprém, approximately one hour southwest of the capital Budapest for its fifth edition. Challenging stages around Lake Balaton await.


Rally Islas Canarias, 2 - 4 May (asphalt)

The island of Gran Canaria’s asphalt roads climb and descend and twist and turn with rapid frequency and demand plenty of driving and pacenote precision. Changeable mountain weather adds to the task in hand and puts an onus on tyre strategy and management.


Royal Rally of Scandinavia, 13 - 15 June (gravel)

Using fast-paced gravel stages in Sweden’s Värmland, the Karlstad event was new for 2023 and bought the ERC back to the country for the first time since 2003 – and rallying back to stages previously run in the thick of winter. The Colin’s Crest jump was a 2023 highlight.


Rally Estonia, 5 - 7 July (gravel)

Voted event of the year after it hosted its first ERC counter in 2014, Rally Estonia is big on jumps, speed and innovation. Made up of rapid gravel stages around the cities of Tartu and Otepää, the event was a WRC round from 2020-2023.


Rally di Roma Capitale, 26 - 28 July (asphalt)

After two rounds on gravel, the ERC switches back to asphalt for an event that was decided by 0.3sec when it ran its first ERC round in 2017. Although the rally is based in Fiuggi to the southeast of Rome, the Eternal City hosts the opening super special stage.


Barum Czech Rally Zlín, 16 - 18 August (asphalt)

Based in the South Moravian university city of Zlín, this is a Tarmac test like no other due to the bumpy and sometimes broken nature of the roads. Several stages feature flat-out blasts through forests. Big fan attendance is guaranteed, intermittent showers are always possible.


Rali Ceredigion, 30 August - 1 September (United Kingdom, asphalt)

Made up of rapid but narrow country lanes close to the famous forests where the principality once staged Britain’s WRC round, Rali Ceredigion first took place in 2019 and celebrated its third running at the start of September when it also hosted the British championship.


Rally Silesia, 11 - 13 October (asphalt)

Polish asphalt ERC events are far from unusual. Rally Poland used sealed-surface stages before it switched to gravel in 2005, while Rally Rzeszów was an ERC round in 2016 and 2017. Based in Katowice, junctions aplenty appear on the bumpy and twisty mountain Tarmac roads.

20 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All

Comments


bottom of page