Wales Rally GB (14-17 November) will move to North Wales in 2013, after agreeing an extended partnership with the Welsh Government.
The announcement comes after an extensive consultation with manufacturers, teams, competitors and spectators.
“We have listened to what the teams and fans want in our determined efforts to create what we are confident will be not only one of the best rounds in the WRC but also a fitting finale to the entire 2013 world championship,” explained Andrew Coe, Chief Executive of rally organiser International Motor Sports.
“South Wales has provided us with a fantastic home for Wales Rally GB since 2000 but the move to North Wales has a number of significant advantages. Most importantly, perhaps, we are closer to the sport’s traditional heartlands, some iconic rally forests, as well as being within a short drive of some of the larger conurbations in the UK such as Liverpool, Manchester and the Midlands.”
“Taking those factors into account, as well as our new ticket pricing policy which is designed to cater for both hardcore rally fans and a wider family audience, we are confident that the 2013 Wales Rally GB will be a highlight on the motor sport calendar.”
The event has been based in South Wales since 2000, but had been considerably scaled down compared to its 1970s “glory days” when it was known as the Lombard RAC Rally. Back in those days, the rally covered much of the country including Scotland, Wales and England and while today’s announcement won’t restore its geographic scope, it will reintroduce night stages.
Four-days of competitive action will feature a more compact route with the majority of the timed Special Stages set in the classic Welsh forests, while family-friendly stages will also return offering a range of tickets at significantly lower prices than before.
Good news if you love rallying, and good news for the future of Rally GB.