FIA rally director Yves Matton has talked of the potential for a more collaborative approach to the World and European Rally Championships in the future, hinting that the ERC’s calendar could be used to house some of the events unable to fit on the WRC schedule.
Matton wouldn’t be drawn on news that WRC Promoter has taken over the running of the ERC from Eurosport Events, but spoke broadly about his vision for the two series.
“We need to find a way [that] all these good rallies are able to be part of the WRC,” he told DirtFish.
“There is a limit on the number of events we can have on the WRC calendar. We need to find an attractive solution for the organizers to be part of a high-level championship.
If it’s more cost-effective at the end it’s the drivers who will be able to do more events with the same budgetYves Matton
“My image for the ERC is [to have] a strong championship in Europe with very strong events and events which have a good image and I believe this is what we have to work for in the future.”
Matton said that cohesive approach to calendar planning could only help the private teams competing in both WRC support classes and the ERC.
“I think the ERC needs to be mainly in [mainland] Europe and we have to think how to be more efficient for the teams. Go in the service park in ERC and WRC [and] it’s the same teams with different drivers.
“If we can make it more efficient for teams investing a lot in our discipline it will help everyone and it will help the sport. If we are able to be more efficient it will be more cost-effective and if it’s more cost-effective at the end it’s the drivers who will be able to do more events with the same budget.
“This could, for example, mean Rally Italy in the WRC one week and Rome in the ERC the next week. That’s an example of how these efficiencies could work.”
Asked if the two series could run on one rally, Matton answered: “It’s possible once a year to have a very big event which is a round of the WRC and the ERC, but this should be the exception, this cannot be normal.
“And even why not have rallycross the same weekend and we could make a rally fair – that could be an idea, but not for more than one event. But this one event could be a very special one.”