October 26: World Rally Championship Makes Historic Debut in the Czech Republic!”
While rounds of the World Rally Championship have crossed borders in the past, the Central European Rally is the first to include stages in three countries – Austria, Czech Republic and Germany – during the same event.
And with the Czech Republic having never hosted the WRC before, another notable first will be achieved.
The innovative event is the culmination of an extensive collaboration between the Austrian Motorsport Federation (AMF), the Autoklub České Republiky (ACCR) and the Allgemeiner Deutsche Automobil-Club (ADAC).
Based in Passau, southern Germany, the route takes crews north to Velká Chuchle (north of Prague) on Thursday October 26 for the ceremonial start and the opening superspecial stage at the Czech capital’s Chuchle Arena horseracing venue.
The after-sunset 8.92-kilometre Circuit of Klatovy stage provides an action-packed stop on the route back south to Germany.
The rally returns to the Czech Republic on Friday for three stages run first in the morning and then again in the afternoon.
Two stages in Austria, Schärdinger Innviertel and Mühltal, are up first on Saturday with the 27.15-kilometre Mühltal test the rally’s longest. It’s then back into Germany for the Knaus Tabbert Bayerischer Wald test prior to midday service in Passau.
Saturday morning’s stages are repeated in the afternoon with the rerun of Knaus Tabbert Bayerischer Wald getting under way after sunset.
Sunday’s deciding leg consists of two stages run twice, Böhmerwald in Austria and Passauer Land in Germany.
According to Tomáš Kunc, general secretary of the Autoclub of the Czech Republic and managing director of the Central European Rally, staging a round of the World Rally Championship on Czech soil is a dream come true for a whole generation.
“We are going to be welcoming a high-class World Championship, in which works teams are heavily involved. The Central European Rally is the penultimate round of the season, so the World Championship title could be at stake. And we are part of all that! Plus, we are starting at Prague Castle and there will be a special stage in Chuchle,” he said, stressing what a historic moment this is for Czech motorsport.
He hopes to see as many Czech fans as possible on the special stages, but is aware that the event will result in some restrictions. “We will agree the closures with the police, in order to ensure there are as few disruptions as possible. We hope that everyone will be tolerant with us,” said Kunc.
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