It's back! World Rally Championship confirms Rally New Zealand return
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After eight years of hard work, lobbying, and disappointment, New Zealand has finally found itself back on the World Rally Championship calendar.
The series overnight confirmed its 2020 schedule, with New Zealand slotting into September 3-6, following Finland and ahead of Turkey.
“We are absolutely thrilled with the news that Rally New Zealand will return to the FIA World Rally Championship calendar,’ said Rally New Zealand 2020 chairman, Peter Johnston.
“This event has been an iconic part of our sporting landscape in New Zealand for many decades and it’s an historic day for motorsport to confirm the event will return.
"New Zealand has always been one of the most popular events with teams and drivers because of our outstanding rally roads and the level of delivery by our team.”
The event will be based in Auckland, and has the support of ATEED behind it. It also appears on the calendar in the absence of Australia.
“We are excited about returning to New Zealand which has such a storied history in rally sport,” said WRC Promoter managing director Oliver Ciesla.
“New Zealand is noted for its magnificent scenery, superb rally roads and such a strong rally community and we can’t wait to bring our championship to your shores, to give our teams the chance to compete here again and to bring stunning pictures of the country to WRC fans around the world.”
Other notable mentions in the calendar include the return of Japan, which hasn't seen a WRC visit in 10 years. The Safari Rally in Kenya is also back, having not been on the WRC schedule since 2002. All up, it's the first time the WRC has had six continents on its calendar in its history.
World Rally Championship 2020 Calendar
|1.||Monte-Carlo||23 - 26 January|
|2.||Sweden||13 - 16 February|
|3.||Mexico||12 - 15 March|
|4.||Chile||16 - 19 April|
|5.||Argentina||30 April - 3 May|
|6.||Portugal||21 - 24 May|
|7.||Italy||4 - 7 June|
|8.||Kenya||16 - 19 July|
|9.||Finland||6 - 9 August|
|10.||New Zealand||3 - 6 September|
|11.||Turkey||24 - 27 September|
|12.||Germany||15 - 18 October|
|13.||Great Britain||29 October - 1 November|
|14.||Japan||19 - 22 November|