Often tight-lipped about the prospect of Rally Australia next year, Motorsport Australia have broken their silence about 2021 and clarified their intention to get the WRC back on Australian shores. The 2021 World Rally Championship calendar includes debutants, Croatia, but omits Australia and New Zealand, among others. It's a calendar highly impacted by COVID-19. There are also six reserve events, highlighting the volatility of the calendar. “We have been in regular discussions with the WRC promoter and the FIA about the plans for 2021 and while it is unfortunate that Australia cannot be on the calendar next year, we understand the rationale behind the decision,” Motorsport Australia CEO Eugene Arocca said. The calendar announced for overnight was 75% European based, and Australia's tight border controls in relation to COVID-19 would not have helped Australia's chances for a round. “In the very short term, our focus will be on the RSEA Safety Motorsport Australia Rally Championship, but we will also continue to work with both the WRC promoter and the FIA about hosting an Australian round in 2022 at a location to be confirmed," Arocca added.

Hayden Paddon contested last year's Eureka Rally in Australia as part of the APRC. Photo: John Doutch

“Despite this news, Motorsport Australia is still hopeful of hosting some international level rally events, with the regional FIA Asia Pacific Rally Championship (APRC) likely to feature at upcoming RSEA Motorsport Australia Rally Championship events in 2021.” While the good money is on Bathurst to host the event next time around, there has also been pushes political parties in Western Australia to bring the event back to its former home. The fight for the WRC's round down under will continue.

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