Rally GB plans ticketing changes after 2017 car park problems

Rally GB will implement an overhaul of ticketing for the 2018 event following overwhelming demand for Britain's round of the World Rally Championship

Rally GB plans ticketing changes after 2017 car park problems

More than 100,000 fans poured into the forests last week, with advance ticket sales up 30%.

Spectator car parks were filled, many within hours of opening, forcing fans to ditch their cars at the side of the roads leading into the stages.

Event managing director Ben Taylor acknowledged changes were required.

"We know the car parks were full and we know this is a problem," he told Autosport.

"We have to factor this into our planning.

"We've sold twice as many World Rally Passes this year and the issue we have is that these tickets have access to every car park and we just can't predict where those people will be going.

"We looked at so many different iterations of the route for this year to make sure we could accommodate as many people as possible and we will be doing more of this next year."

Taylor sympathised with fans who had struggled to get to the stages, but added that the event had been a success overall.

"If you'd asked me at the start of the week, this would have been everything I could have possibly dreamed of," he said.

"It's been simply incredible. We've had an exceptional rally with a home winner, huge crowds, fantastic cars and brilliant sunshine.

"We've seen this coming in ticket sales and all the other measurables in recent years.

"Yes, we are benefiting from the regulation change which has given us the most exciting World Rally Cars ever and yes, Volkswagen's departure spiced up the driver market and left us with incredible unpredictable rallies.

"Previously we would have been using that as our story, but now that's a bonus on top of the story of our rally.

"We're in a position to take advantage of the strength of the championship."

Makinen calls for route changes

Not everybody was happy with the route. Toyota team principal Tommi Makinen called on Taylor to streamline the itinerary for 2018.

This year featured a service park in Deeside and a regroup in nearby Chester, but the main forest stages were all at least an hour's drive away in Wales.

"I understand there are many challenges with the route and the stages being far from the service park, but we should not forget it is the spectators and fans who make this work," Makinen told Autosport.

"There are a lot of people in Chester, and they would be interested to come here, but we gave them nothing to see here in the service park except for half an hour on Saturday."

Taylor accepted Makinen's perspective but said teams had complained about previous service locations.

"We will always listen to what the teams want," he said, "but we've tried being close to the stages and, from memory, the manufacturers weren't keen on being based in Builth Wells."

shares
comments
2017 WRC title with M-Sport most emotional moment of career - Ogier
Previous article

2017 WRC title with M-Sport most emotional moment of career - Ogier

Next article

Rally GB winner Elfyn Evans set for 2018 M-Sport WRC team promotion

Rally GB winner Elfyn Evans set for 2018 M-Sport WRC team promotion
Ranking the top 10 WRC drivers of 2022 Plus

Ranking the top 10 WRC drivers of 2022

The World Rally Championship welcomed in a new hybrid era in 2022, presenting an unknown challenge to the planet's top rally aces. New records were broken, as Toyota's leading charge became the youngest-ever title-winner, while familiar returning faces mixed it up with the new generation. Autosport picks out the 10 best performers from the year

WRC
4 h
The key steps on Rovanpera's romp to a history-making WRC title Plus

The key steps on Rovanpera's romp to a history-making WRC title

With only cameo roles played by legendary Sebastiens Ogier and Loeb, Kalle Rovanpera ushered in the new hybrid era for the World Rally Championship by becoming its youngest champion. Here's how Toyota's Flying Finn crushed the competition, led by Hyundai's departing star Ott Tanak

WRC
Dec 1, 2022
How trailblazer Kalle Rovanpera has ripped up the WRC record book Plus

How trailblazer Kalle Rovanpera has ripped up the WRC record book

At the tender age of 22, Kalle Rovanpera is redefining what’s possible to achieve in rallying and inspiring a new legion of fans as a result. The newly-crowned World Rally Championship title-winner and his peers reflect on his ability and the start of his success in the top tier

WRC
Nov 26, 2022
How Hyundai and Neuville gatecrashed Toyota's homecoming party Plus

How Hyundai and Neuville gatecrashed Toyota's homecoming party

Thierry Neuville signed off the 2022 World Rally Championship season with his second win of the season in Japan after Toyota rival Elfyn Evans suffered a late puncture. With Sebastien Ogier and Kalle Rovanpera also delayed by punctures and incidents, it opened the door for Neuville and Ott Tanak to record Hyundai's second 1-2 of the season in Toyota's own backyard

WRC
Nov 14, 2022
The message a WRC stalwart sent which its new king couldn’t answer Plus

The message a WRC stalwart sent which its new king couldn’t answer

Sebastien Ogier might be the outgoing World Rally champion, but it didn’t stop him reminding everyone of the skills that made him an eight-time world champion. As victory at Rally Spain led Toyota’s charge to a titles clean sweep, it did pose a question to newly-crowned champion Kalle Rovanpera which he could not answer

WRC
Oct 24, 2022
Autosport gets to grips as a WRC co-driver Plus

Autosport gets to grips as a WRC co-driver

The majority of headlines may focus on the exploits of drivers in the World Rally Championship, but the challenges facing their co-drivers are no less demanding. Autosport got in the passenger seat with Toyota Gazoo Racing to find out just what it takes to succeed

WRC
Oct 6, 2022
How Rally New Zealand encapsulated record-breaking Rovanpera’s WRC title charge Plus

How Rally New Zealand encapsulated record-breaking Rovanpera’s WRC title charge

Kalle Rovanpera’s coronation as the new World Rally Championship king had been a long time coming, only to be postponed by hiccups in Belgium and Greece. But at Rally New Zealand the “Full Send” Finn demonstrated exactly how he's been able to rewrite the rallying record book as he stormed to victory to become the youngest ever world champion

WRC
Oct 3, 2022
How a Toyota lifeline reignited Lappi's WRC career Plus

How a Toyota lifeline reignited Lappi's WRC career

Motorsport can be brutal at times. One moment a driver can be the next big thing, but it can spiral in the other direction so quickly. Thankfully, sometimes drivers receive second chances. And Esapekka Lappi has taken his World Rally Championship lifeline in both hands

WRC
Sep 28, 2022