The FIA World Motorsport Council in Vienna yesterday confirmed the full calendar for the 2017 World Rally Championship.
The first half of next year’s calendar had been previously announced and the 13-round series will again see Australia host the championship finale.
The China Rally which was scheduled this year but was cancelled due to flooding and road damage will not be held in 2017.
It means the 2017 calendar comprises the same events as 2016 but in a slightly revised order. The Tour de Corse tarmac event shifts from September to April in a move that loads the first half of the year.
When the championship takes its traditional four-week northern hemisphere summer break ahead of Rally Finland there will five events remaining rather than six.
While the most significant change in 2017 will be an exciting new generation of more powerful WRC cars there is also a sporting change with an amended start order procedure for the Priority 1 (manufacturer and team championship) drivers.
On Day 1 of each event the start order will be determined by the Driver’s Championship classification — as it was in 2016.
Then on Day 2 the leading drivers will start in the reverse order of the rally classification after Day 1. In 2016 the start order on the first two days had been set by the Driver’s Championship classification.
The Day 3 procedure is unchanged with drivers running in the reverse order of the rally classification at the end of Day 2. Any Priority 1 drivers who rejoin under the Rally 2 provisions will start at the end of the P1 group.
The FIA has also established a WRC Trophy for drivers and co-drivers participating in pre-2017 specification WRC cars, creating an opportunity for teams to run the 2016 specification WRC machinery.
Crews can compete in a maximum of seven rallies and count their best six results but the title will only be awarded if a minimum of five competitors register for the Trophy category.
Michelin and DMACK have been confirmed as the registered tyre suppliers for the 2017 FIA World Rally Championship.
2017 FIA World Rally Championship:
January 20-22 — Monte Carlo February 10-12 — Sweden March 10-12 — Mexico April 7-9 — France (Tour de Corse) April 28-30 — Argentina May 19-21 — Portugal June 9-11 — Italy (Sardinia) June 30-July 2 — Poland July 28-30 — Finland August 18-20 — Germany October 6-8 — Spain October 27-29 — Great Britain November 17-19 — Australia