Bulgaria WRC bid faces crucial test

Next year's World Rally Championship schedule will be cast in stone after this weekend, when Rally Bulgaria - the sole FIA candidate rally for 2010 - runs

Bulgaria WRC bid faces crucial test

The event is included in next year's calendar as a full round of the WRC, but that status is dependant on the FIA observer's report from this weekend's rally. Should this event not fulfil the necessary requirements, both Argentina and Italy are standing by as reserve events, ready to slot into the 13-round schedule for next season.

A source within the FIA said: "From what we have seen so far, Rally Bulgaria is a capable event. Obviously, it has a history in the FIA European Rally Championship - and it is a round of that series again this year. We have to wait and see how the event goes and we can't possibly prejudge that.

"What we do know, however, is that the credible and acceptable level of rallies at the WRC is being raised all of the time. We have a promoter in the WRC, which will only accept the best events. And with Argentina and Italy listed as reserves, Bulgaria has to put on a good show this week."

The event gets underway with a ceremonial start this evening, before running six stages tomorrow (Saturday) and six on Sunday. Based in the ski resort of Borovets, 60km away from the capital Sofia, the all-asphalt rally will include a total distance of 747km, 268km of which is competitive.

Former European champion Giandomenico Basso starts among the favourites in his Abarth Grande Punto, with top Polish driver Michal Solowow (Peugeot) also in the running for victory on what could be the most important event in Bulgarian rally history.

shares
comments
Rally GB settles Wales dispute

Previous article

Rally GB settles Wales dispute

Next article

Alister McRae linked to Proton drive

Alister McRae linked to Proton drive
Load comments
How Neuville stole the show from Ogier vs Evans slugfest in Spain Plus

How Neuville stole the show from Ogier vs Evans slugfest in Spain

While all pre-event chat focused on the two World Rally Championship title fighters, their closest challenger charged into the spotlight on Rally Spain. Thierry Neuville's star turn and another strong drive from Elfyn Evans in his fight with Sebastien Ogier made for an intriguing event as the 2021 campaign nears its crunch point

WRC
Oct 18, 2021
The steely determination behind the WRC’s Solberg 2.0 Plus

The steely determination behind the WRC’s Solberg 2.0

Two decades after Petter Solberg emerged as a World Rally Championship winner, his son Oliver is ready to take the WRC by storm. Having secured a part-time WRC factory drive for Hyundai in 2022, he's raring to repay the marque's faith in him and follow in his 2003 champion father's footsteps

WRC
Oct 14, 2021
Analysing the key moves in WRC’s 2022 silly season Plus

Analysing the key moves in WRC’s 2022 silly season

The World Rally Championship will step into a new hybrid era in 2022, but the car changes haven't been the only excitement that has built within the paddock. WRC's 'silly season' kicked off in a big way and all the key driver moves for 2022 - of which there are many - look set to shake things up

WRC
Oct 13, 2021
How joining Finland’s exclusive club was Evans' true WRC coming-of-age Plus

How joining Finland’s exclusive club was Evans' true WRC coming-of-age

By his own admission, the fifth World Rally Championship victory of Elfyn Evans' career in Finland last weekend was the drive of his life. Winning five stages in a row and soaking up huge pressure from the Hyundais on the fastest gravel stages around, the Welshman put in a faultless showing that proved what he is truly made of

WRC
Oct 4, 2021
Does Neuville have a point with his Rally1 rant? Plus

Does Neuville have a point with his Rally1 rant?

OPINION: Thierry Neuville's diatribe against the upcoming Rally1-spec machines that will usher in the World Rally Championship's new hybrid era was remarkable in an era where drivers are usually reticent to air their views in public. But are the Belgian's concerns about speed, safety and cost entirely valid?

WRC
Sep 16, 2021
How the WRC's new flying Finn reached new heights in the Greek mountains Plus

How the WRC's new flying Finn reached new heights in the Greek mountains

After Kalle Rovanpera’s historic feat at Rally Estonia, the Finn scaled new heights at the Rally of the Gods with a commanding victory. And this time Toyota’s young star demonstrated why the future is bright with his devastating speed and consistency at the Acropolis Rally

WRC
Sep 13, 2021
The WRC drivers that came of age at the Acropolis Rally Plus

The WRC drivers that came of age at the Acropolis Rally

Five drivers have won first time out at the Rally Acropolis, transcending the tough dirt and gravel Greek roads to cement a place in rallying folklore. Here are three of the first-time winners' tales

WRC
Sep 9, 2021
Understanding Suninen’s sudden WRC exit gamble Plus

Understanding Suninen’s sudden WRC exit gamble

From being considered a likely contender to drive the next-generation M-Sport Ford Puma in 2022, Teemu Suninen's abrupt exit has created plenty of questions. The Finn's bid to become his country's next World Rally Championship winner won't be furthered by being sidelined, but there may be reason behind the decision

WRC
Sep 2, 2021