America’s return to the World Rally Championship has taken a significant step forward with the confirmation of a demonstration event in Tennessee next month.
The Chattanooga-based event on April 7/8 is a precursor to a test event planned for September ahead of potential WRC inclusion next year. A costed roadmap back to the WRC was laid out to government officials on Wednesday.
Chattanooga Tourism CEO Barry White told DirtFish: “We will execute two events: a demonstration in April and a test in the fall. If these events are successful they could potentially position Chattanooga to host a WRC event in the coming years.”
Despite various attempts to bring the WRC back to the United States, America hasn’t featured on the calendar since Miki Biasion won the 1988 Olympus Rally.
DirtFish understands that could change as early as next season if September’s test event goes to plan through the Cherokee National Forest close to Chattanooga.
WRC Promoter’s director of events Simon Larkin said: “We welcome the announcement coming out of Chattanooga today. WRC Promoter has been interested in a return to the USA, a country that was an occasional host to WRC events between 1973 and 1988.
“We are currently negotiating with a consortium that we believe has all the necessary ingredients to bring the WRC back to the USA and will make further announcements in conjunction with the FIA, when details and timelines can be confirmed.”