Today, July 2, is a historical day in Estonian autosport. An agreement between WRC Promoter and Estonian Autosport Events was signed at the Estonian Prime Minister’s Office, Stenbock House. Estonia becomes the 33rd country in the world to host a round of the FIA World Rally Championship. Rally Estonia, a round of the WRC is held on 4-6 September 2020. A memorandum of understanding was signed by Estonian Prime Minister Jüri Ratas, Minister of Culture Tõnis Lukas, Minister of Finance Martin Helme, Managing Director of WRC Promoter Oliver Ciesla and Director of Rally Estonia Urmo Aava.
- A WRC Rally Estonia will be run in South-Estonia on 4-6 September 2020
- Estonia is the 33rd country to host the World Rally Championship
- A memorandum of understanding was signed by the Estonian Government, WRC Promoter and Rally Estonia
After a half-year break, the World Rally Championship series will restart in Estonia, when Rally Estonia will run on 4-6 September. The historical Rally Estonia is held on the roads of Tartu, Otepää, Elva, Kanepi and Kambja municipalities. The centre of the rally is the Estonian National Museum in Tartu, where the podium, rally HQ, service park and press centre are located.
WRC Rally Estonia will be held in accordance with all the terms and conditions of the COVID-19 situation. The memorandum of understanding states that the Estonian Government will form a special committee for the purpose of minimizing the risk of coronavirus at Rally Estonia. The committee consists of representatives from Estonian Rescue Board, Estonian Police and Border Guard Board, Estonian Road Administration, Estonian Health Board, State Forest Management Centre and the Ministry of Interior. WRC Promoter and FIA will provide international know-how and practices in this matter.
Jüri Ratas, Prime Minister of Estonian Republic: „Today’s historical moment is a result of the consistent work by many people during the years. With this step, Estonia once again confirms its position in the world of rallying: in addition to being the homeland of the World Champions, today Estonia has become an organiser of a World Rally Championship event. This is more than a unique opportunity to organise a global sport event in Estonia. Having a FIA World Rally Championship round in Estonia introduces our country in the world and contributes to our economy and regional development. Additionally, this has a positive impact to Estonian motorsport and its development. I acknowledge and congratulate the Rally Estonia team, their partners, local municipalities and WRC Promoter! Their joint effort and actions have contributed to the fact that in September the Estonian people can cheer the reigning World Champions in their title chase on their home roads.”
Tõnis Lukas, Minister of Culture: “I’m impressed by the effort of the organisers who have built Rally Estonia year by year to make it a top level event in the world. The first official round of the World Rally Championship in Estonia is excellent proof of it. This is the biggest sport event after Estonia regained independence. The images from our beautiful country and its nature and cultural attractions will attract more then 150 million viewers worldwide in television and internet.
Martin Helme, Minister of Finance: “The economic impact of Rally Estonia to the whole country and specifically the South-Estonian region has been remarkable. In addition to the direct economic impact, FIA World Rally Championship raises awareness about Estonia internationally. Worldwide TV-coverage can create new opportunities to Estonian entrepreneurs and people as we have a possibility to introduce our country and its people to potential investors. Organising a safe event at this level gives us an opportunity to show our innovative solutions and the abilities of our people to the world. I respect the courage and innovative thinking of the Estonian autosport community and wish them luck!”
Oliver Ciesla, the managing director of WRC Promoter: “Today’s restart announcement sends a clear signal that the 2020 WRC is back in business. The Estonian public and media demonstrate huge passion for WRC and the expectation there, and across the sport in general, will build rapidly from now ahead of September’s rally. We’re excited to bring the WRC to the home of the reigning world champion, and we appreciate the great support from the Estonian Government, the Estonian Autosport Union and Rally Estonia to make this event happen.”
Ari Vatanen, President of Estonian Autosport Union, World Rally Champion: “A WRC event taking place in Estonia is excellent news which is a result of hard work done by the team of Urmo Aava and support from the Estonian Government. I’m convinced that Estonia deserves this. Motor sport has always been big in Estonia and it has a big influence in introducing Estonia internationally. Estonia may be a small country, but we have shown our effectiveness. I’m confident we will be able to organise a world class event.
Urmo Aava, director of Rally Estonia: “It has been more than 10 years of hard work and now the dream has come true. Our team has grown during the years and we have all one thing in common - passion for what we do and believe in. It wouldn’t have been possible without our partners who share our DNA. The Estonian government with its institutions, local municipalities, private sector and people who share with us the ideas of how to organise a world class autosport event. And of course, the rally fans all over the world! Most of them have been with us since the first days of Rally Estonia. Now have we an opportunity to organize an event in a very short time which could enable Estonia and Estonian autosport to secure a spot in the WRC calendar in the future.”
Rally Estonia 2020 is held on 4-6 September on the roads of Tartu, Otepää, Elva, Kanepi and Kambja municipalities. Rally Estonia is a round of the FIA World Rally Championship.
Credit to the pictures in attachment: Jaanus Ree
Estonian Autosport Events MTÜ
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