What we know about the WRC 2025 calendar so far

Here's how next year's championship is current shaping up

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Rally Islas Canarias joining the World Rally Championship calendar for 2025 was the first confirmed piece on a new jigsaw puzzle that’s still being built.

Only six of the events currently on the WRC calendar have long-term deals that take them into 2025; the rest are still to be locked in.

Spain’s return to the series naturally raised questions: if it’s in, what’s out? What does that mean for other rallies – will it come at the expense of one of the other events bidding to enter the calendar or will an existing event disappear?

We don’t have all the answers yet. But we’ve gone through the whole calendar – plus the main contenders vying to make their way onto the calendar – to put together a picture of what next year’s WRC calendar could end up looking like.

Up for renewal

First on the renewals list is probably a surprise to most: Monte Carlo. But fear not; there is no indication it’s going to disappear off-calendar. All major stakeholders want the event to remain on calendar as the traditional curtain-raiser and there’s nothing to suggest that isn’t going to happen once again in 2025.

Recent tradition for Rally Islas Canarias has been to run it in early May – or, going a bit further back in its history, late April. Depending on where it slots into the calendar, it may be logistically tricky to keep the two WRC rounds that currently occupy mid-April and mid-May respectively: Rally Croatia and Rally Portugal.

There had been suggestions from WRC Promoter last year that a multi-year deal was in progress for Croatia but that so far hasn’t come to anything; 2024 is the asphalt event’s final season for now. It also faces competition of sorts from fellow asphalt event Rally Hungary; promoters of the ERC event had previously spoken of an ambition to join the WRC by rotating with Croatia.

Meanwhile, Rally Portugal’s contract with WRC Promoter has an option to extend for one further year after its 2024 edition.

Broadly speaking event rotation has not been on the agenda recently, according to WRC Promoter’s Simon Larkin. But ERC events are considered the exception: “At the moment our only strategy is to definitely have an incentive for probably one slot in the WRC for ERC [events],” Larkin told DirtFish in April last year.

Rally Poland is back on the WRC calendar after a seven-year absence, making a step up from the ERC. But when its return to the global stage for 2024 was announced, there was no mention of a multi-year deal.

Elfyn Evans

Croatia has been a popular recent addition to the WRC calendar, but does not have a contract for 2025

Latvia is in a near-identical situation to Poland: it has also been elevated from the ERC after a long stint at continental level, where it was known as Rally Liepāja, and was announced as an addition to the WRC calendar only for 2024. But that’s as far as its WRC stay is locked in for as it stands.

A return to Concepción beckons for the second and final year of Rally Chile’s current deal. Last year there had been talk of a contract extension all the way until 2027 for Chile, tied in with a possible return for Argentina. Neither has materialised so far – and therefore Chile’s future remains up in the air for now.

Central European Rally, a new addition to the calendar last year, also has nothing secured beyond the end of this year. It has already had to move dates for this season due to its service park location in Passau not being available on its original calendar slot.

Also up for renewal is Rally Japan. But the odds for it remaining on the calendar are good: it weathered being cancelled twice during the Covid-19 pandemic, having originally been slated to make its WRC return all the way back in 2020. Add in Toyota’s strong commitment to the WRC and Japan being its home round in a corporate sense, and there’s an expectation it will still be on the calendar in 2025.

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México is hopefuly of a WRC return after last month's Rally of Nations - organized by the same team behind its WRC rally

The hopefuls

There’s been plenty of excitement about Ireland making a WRC comeback. Its return is by no means sealed; Motorsport Ireland is still waiting to hear back from the Irish government about funding and there will still be other bridges to cross even after that. But if the money needed arrives, Ireland is in a strong position to be on next year’s calendar.

A WRC future is looking possible for Paraguay – but potentially not for 2025. One obvious obstacle to a quick introduction is a lack of candidate event having successfully run; 2026 is likely a more realistic date for the South American country to make its first foray into the WRC, if it can get its much talked-about deal over the line.

Rally Argentina, like Paraguay and Chile, is still in discussions with WRC Promoter about a return to the world stage. If all goes to plan, two out of three could be on the calendar next year, with a double-header in South America the Promoter’s previously stated aim.

A round in the Middle East, which DirtFish understands to be Saudi Arabia, also remains a work in progress for 2025.

México set out its stall for a WRC return in 2025 last month with Rally of Nations, an event by the same team behind the WRC event that’s specifically designed to keep everyone’s powder fresh and ensure they can pick up where they left off if they are back on the calendar next year.

As with many potential WRC rounds, government funding still needs to be signed off; México still has the possibility of being part of the WRC calendar next year but its future remains up in the air.

Rally Ireland, Sligo 15-18 11 2007

Ireland is also close to a WRC return in 2025, subject to government funding

A massively left-field wildcard is Indonesia. IMI president Bambang Soesatyo had announced last year that he wanted to participate in the bidding process for a WRC round in 2025; conversations were had with the Promoter but there was no substantial progress made, so Indonesia won’t be making a comeback any time soon.

A round in the United States is currently in development, based out of Chattanooga, Tennessee. But that won’t be appearing on the 2025 calendar – its target is to aim for a calendar slot in 2026.

Events already secure for 2025

Rally Sweden has its place on the calendar locked-in for several years to come: only a few months ago the event announced an extension to its deal all the way until 2027, ensuring the WRC will continue to visit Umeå in Northern Sweden for at least another three years.

Esapekka Lappi

Rally Finland is arguably the WRC's spiritual home, and isn't going anywhere 

Another event on the long-term attendance list is Safari Rally Kenya. President Uhuru Kenyatta is fully onboard with the nation’s premier motorsport event and went to the extent of announcing his nation’s long-term presence on the WRC calendar personally; it agreed a five-year extension all the way back in 2021 and will continue until at least 2026.

The first confirmed addition to the WRC 2025 calendar is Rally Islas Canarias; the long-time ERC round is stepping up to the world level for the first time next year on a two-year deal. It still has a year left to run on its current ERC deal before making the step up.

Rally Italy will remain on the island of Sardinia for 2025, as it reaches the end of a three-year deal that was signed by Automobile Club d’Italia and WRC Promoter at the end of 2022.

Almost every single season of the WRC has included a round in Finland, so it’s no surprise that Rally Finland is on the long-term host list, with its current deal running until 2026.

Acropolis Rally is also contractually locked in for 2025, as its two-year extension signed in February last year kicks off this season. At the end of its current contract it will have been back on the WRC calendar for five consecutive years, rejoining in 2021 after an eight-year absence.