Rally – Monte Carlo WRC/IRC Combo?

We have established that Max Mosley and the FiA had no idea how to run the WRC. Strict and ever changing regulations forced many manufacturers out and key rounds of the championship were also lost in the years leading to Mosley’s stepping down. The new administration has worked hard with promoter North Sport to bring back the glory of WRC. New manufacturers and new cars have really created a buzz this year. The one thing we are missing is a steady calender.

The Monte Carlo event is no doubt the crown jewel of the rally world. Because the FiA had no idea how to run a calendar, Monte Carlo opted out of the WRC in ’09 in favor of the IRC. However, according to a story from MaxRally, it would seem that the powers in charge of the WRC are keen to bring back the January classic for next season.

The idea at the moment would be to have it as a round of both the IRC and WRC. What!?!? That’s right. Organizers are currently entertaining the idea of having the event serve as both the first round of the IRC and WRC at the same time. The key differences come from promotional bodies. The IRC is associated with the Eurosport channel as opposed to North Sport for WRC.

That opens up some interesting issues for the TV coverage of the event. I am not overly sure how these challenges can be overcome to be honest. If my opinion mattered in this whole discussion I would opt for the WRC to allow Eurosport the coverage. They have proven the last couple years they are more than capable of covering the event. This season, nearly every stage was covered with brilliant picture and analysis. Please realize that my only interaction with the coverage was through a number of YouTube videos, but I thought the team at Eurosport did a fantastic job to say the least. Another issue is the WRC needs Monte. It was proven this year that Monte does not HAVE to have the WRC to be successful. Concessions need to be made and they have to come from the WRC side of the house.

Keep it tuned here at the paddock. We will follow this story as is develops throughout the year. A Monte start followed by Sweden would be fantastic opening to the 2012 schedule.

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