The 70th anniversary competition of the Finnish World Rally Championship will be postponed to 2021.
AKK Sports, the organizer of the rally, confirmed on Wednesday that the event planned for the beginning of August will be postponed to next year. STT said on Tuesday that it was not possible to postpone the rally.
- The only option is to run the race on the original driving days. Next autumn, for example October, is out of the question, rally competition director Kai Tarkiainen said on Tuesday.
Although the situation of the coronavirus pandemic in Finland has turned for the better, the unpredictability of the development of the situation left too many uncertainties for the organization of competition.
For example, the possible continuation of restrictions on public events and the safe travel of foreign competitors and stables to Finland remained too open questions.
According to the AKK press release, in the current situation, the investments required by the World Rally Championship arrangements would not have been justified to continue as the financial risks increased.
- Although the cancellation of the rally had already been prepared for in the spring, it is clear that the decision was difficult in many ways. With the cancellation, we want to show responsibility to all our stakeholders and to society as a whole. Health and well-being are always a priority, said rally promoter Jani Backman in a press release.
The Finnish World Rally Championship, formerly Jyväskylä's major races, would have been celebrated for the 70th time in August. The postponement of the event to next year is known to be financially tough.
- The event leaves 14–15 million euros annually in the Jyväskylä region. The amount, together with its tax revenue, will have a large economic impact regionally and more broadly, Tarkiainen commented to STT on Tuesday.
The date of the 2021 Finnish World Rally Championship will be confirmed later.
Story updated at 1:50 p.m.