The South African – and final round – of the 2019 World Rallycross Championship has been moved to the beginning of November in a reduced calendar for next season.
Following an FIA World Motor Sport Council meeting in Saint Petersburg, Russia recently, World Rallycross Championship managing director Paul Bellamy announced a revised 2019 WRX calendar, which has effectively been reduced from 12 to 10 rounds.
As early as October the decision had been made the Portuguese round at Montalegre, Vila Real, had been dropped, to be replaced by a new season-opening ‘away fixture’ at Yas Marina in Abu Dhabi, while the German round at Estering would become a European championship-only standalone event.
The 11-round season was planned to end with the World Rallycross of Cape Town at Killarney International Raceway on November 30 and December 1, to accommodate the Killarney Motor Show on the first Sunday in November and the Toy Run on Sunday, November 24.
Now, however, the United States round at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas on September 28 and 29 has been downgraded to a round of the American Rallycross series, “which World Rallycross teams will be welcome to compete in, but it will not be part of the World Championship”, says Bellamy.
“After consulting with the FIA and our World Championship teams we have decided to reduce the number of events in our 2019 calendar. This decision has been made to help control costs for the teams and ensure the series remains as competitive as possible. We are planning the return of the World Championship to the United States in 2021, when we add electric cars.”
The World Rallycross of Cape Town at Killarney International Raceway has also been moved forward to the weekend of 9/10 November. This has had a knock-on effect, forcing the Western Province Motor Club to move its premier Killarney Motor Show up to October 27, just two weeks before the World Rallycross event.
On the upside, however, it has become possible to include an additional, ninth round of the Regional Power Series sponsored by Wingfield Motors on November 30, to provide an even more action-packed year for Western Cape motorsport fans.
FIA World Rallycross Championship 2019:
1. Abu Dhabi – Yas Marina – 5/6 April
2. Spain – Catalunya – 27/28 April
3. Belgium – Spa-Francorchamps – 11/12 May
4. Great Britain – Silverstone – 25/26 May
5. Norway – Hell – 15/16 June
6. Sweden – Höljes – 6/7 July
7. Canada – Trois-Rivières – 3/4 August
8. France – Lohéac – 31 August/1 September
9. Latvia – Riga – 14/15 September
10. South Africa – Cape Town – 9/10 November