Currently reading: Wales Rally GB cancelled for 2020 due to coronavirus
Organisers say ongoing uncertainty has forced them to can Britain's round of the World Rally Championship
James Attwood, digital editor
News
3 mins read
9 June 2020

Wales Rally GB, Britain’s round of the World Rally Championship, has been cancelled for 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The long-running event in North Wales was due to run from 29 October-1 November and would have been the penultimate round of this year’s WRC. But with the event regularly attracting more than 100,000 spectators and ongoing uncertainty about the feasibility of large-scale gatherings, organisers said that “there were too many unknown factors to make the organisation of such a sizeable sporting fixture a realistic, or sensible, option in these uncertain times”.

David Richards, the chairman of Motorsport UK, the event organiser and governing body of British motorsport, said: “This is not a decision that we have taken lightly but, in close consultation with our chief funding partner, the Welsh government, it is sadly one we are obliged to make in light of the ongoing global coronavirus pandemic.

“We have been closely monitoring the guidance issued by government, and it is becoming increasingly clear that it is impossible to make plans with any certainty for such major events in the autumn. We therefore have to accept, with an incredibly heavy heart, that cancelling this year’s event is the only responsible and prudent option. We will instead start focusing our attentions on creating an even bigger and better world-class showcase for 2021.”

The WRC has been heavily affected by the coronavirus outbreak, with Rally Portugal, the Safari Rally Kenya, Rally Finland and Rally New Zealand already having been cancelled for 2020. Events that were previously due to run in Argentina and Sardinia are officially postponed, although it's unknown how feasible it will be to reschedule these.

The next scheduled event is Rally Turkey on 3-6 September, with Germany and Japan the only other rallies now remaining on the calendar – although there are doubts about whether all three will be able to run. Three rounds of this year’s WRC were completed before the coronavirus lockdowns began, with Toyota’s Sébastien Ogier currently leading the points.

While circuit-racing championships, including Formula 1, are slowly beginning to restart, they are aided by the ability to run without spectators in closed facilities, and with venues that allow for teams and officials to be socially distanced. By contrast, rallies are run over hundreds of miles of special stages across large regions, making eliminating crowds virtually impossible.

In Britain, governing body Motorsport UK is allowing events to restart from July onwards with a number of restrictions in place - including a ban on having more than one competitor in a car at any time. That effectively prohibits rallying, with events currently limited to time-trial-style events at closed, single-venue locations.

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Rally GB was also due to include two rounds of this year's British Rally Championship. Series bosses have now decided not to continue with the 2020 season, with the loss of Rally GB added to the cancelled West Cork, Corbeau Seats and Ulster rallies. While the season-opening Cambrian Rally had been held, organisers said "it is not possible to continue with sufficient events to have a full and meaningful championship".

Originally known as the RAC Rally and first run in 1932 – based on an idea from The Autocar – Wales Rally GB is one of just two events to have been a permanent part of the WRC since the series began in 1973 (although it counted only for the second-tier WRC-2 series in 1996). The event has only previously not run due to World War Two in 1940, due to petrol rationing following the Suez Crisis in 1957 and due to a foot-and-mouth disease outbreak in 1967.

Organisers estimate that the event is worth more than £9 million in economic benefits to the North Wales region, while also raising more than £250,000 for local charities.

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Comments
5

9 June 2020

Let that sink in. They don't have confidence they can run an event over four months away!

 

And Britain is still far, far behind in dealing with this virus. Far too late due to bludering Boris, the absentee PM, and now lockdown is effectively over after his nepotism backing rather than sacking Cummings.

 

It's a mess.

 

But what did you expect from a fantasist and serial liar?

 

9 June 2020
Symanski wrote:

Let that sink in. They don't have confidence they can run an event over four months away!

 

And Britain is still far, far behind in dealing with this virus. Far too late due to bludering Boris, the absentee PM, and now lockdown is effectively over after his nepotism backing rather than sacking Cummings.

 

It's a mess.

 

But what did you expect from a fantasist and serial liar?

 

I'm no lover of Boris or any party that's in power, none of them, none of them can run a Country primarily because you can't please all the voters, and the two parties want there policies to be law, as for this ongoing Cummings thing, let's move on, it's old News, we all now he'll not be the only one in Parliament or anywhere in this Country flouting the lockdown, I see some of my Neighbours, kids, teenagers all not observing social distancing, in my area there was no new cases yesterday, so putting up this statement isn't helping.

9 June 2020
Peter Cavellini wrote:

I'm no lover of Boris or any party that's in power, none of them, none of them can run a Country primarily because you can't please all the voters, and the two parties want there policies to be law, as for this ongoing Cummings thing, let's move on, it's old News, we all now he'll not be the only one in Parliament or anywhere in this Country flouting the lockdown, I see some of my Neighbours, kids, teenagers all not observing social distancing, in my area there was no new cases yesterday, so putting up this statement isn't helping.

With the corruption shown by Boris protecting Cummings many people are wondering why they bothered with social distancing. Why should we when our leaders aren't "leading".

 

It risks a second wave of infection, and consider that Britain is one of the last countries to put up borders - the one thing this Brexit government promised yet wouldn't do in the face of a pandemic!

 

That is how useless, inept, and incompetent Boris is. He simply doesn't care.

 

9 June 2020

Try the Daily Mirror Symanski this is a car website

9 June 2020
xxxx wrote:

Try the Daily Mirror Symanski this is a car website

Try and separate the two. Explain why Britain can't go back to normal today.

 

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