The project will eventually bring world class competitors, teams, spectators, and media to see Canadian rally for themselves, and to share it across the globe.
“We started looking at this idea in 2011,” says Founding Director Keith Morison. “Recently things have started coming together and we think this is the right time to put a real effort into making this idea a reality.”
The idea of bringing the WRC to Canada has come and gone over the years, but it is not just in the thoughts of Canadians.
“We welcome the formation of this organization to further explore the opportunities for a WRC event in Canada, and look forward to working with them to pursue all possible options together for an exciting future,” says WRC Promoter GmbH Managing Director Oliver Ciesla.
“WRC Promoter and the FIA have long stated their desire to expand the global impact of the WRC by increasing the number of events outside of Europe. Canada is, in particular, of great interest to the WRC, its car manufacturer-backed teams, and commercial partners. It offers the WRC further access to the North American market and can provide a new sporting challenge and competition environment.”
The Rally Promoter Association of Canada is a federally incorporated non-profit organization, and has affiliated with the Canadian Association of Rallysport (CARS) as a member club. Part of RPAC’s mandate is to work in the best interests of rally sport in Canada, a goal that CARS encourages.
“The Canadian Association of Rallysport is pleased to support the newly formed Rally Promoter Association of Canada and their efforts in exploring the opportunity for a WRC event in Canada,” says CARS President John Hall.
“A WRC event is a huge undertaking and something that must be well thought out, well prepared, and engage a broad base from across the country if it is to have a chance of succeeding. I have complete faith that RPAC includes the right people with the right approach to bring a WRC event to Canada.”
Morison is joined on the founding Board of Directors by Jorge Dascollas, Martin Burnley, Chris Kremer, and Warwick Patterson.
Together they bring a range of experiences within the sport as well as a strong mix of skills from their personal lives and careers. This group will lead the initial investigations and will set the foundation of the event in place, making sure the project will bring benefits to the rally community across Canada.
The project expects a five-year build-up to the first FIA WRC event, and has several hurdles to clear before the event plans are finalized.
“A WRC event needs the support of all levels of government as well as the development of some meaningful corporate partnerships to be viable. The next year will be spent meeting with a wide range of officials and potential partners to make sure this foundation exists,” says Morison. “Once we understand where the support for the event is, we can then start fleshing out the details.”
The Rally Promoter Association of Canada is also launching their website, RallyPromoter.ca, that will be a source of information both for the WRC season and for progress on the project. Memberships are available for those who want to show their support and help cover the costs our volunteers will incur as they work towards this goal.