WRC announces return to New Zealand as 2022 calendar is unveiled

Series to race across four continents for 50th season.

WRC announces return to New Zealand as 2022 calendar is unveiled

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  • Calendar to span 13 races
  • 2022 marks WRC's first season using hybrid technology

WRC Promoter, promoter of the World Rally Championship (WRC), has announced the series' 2022 calendar.

Entering its 50th year, WRC will kick off the 2022 season with an event in Monte Carlo on 20th to 23rd January, before more European-based rounds follow in Sweden (24th to 27th February), Croatia (21st to 24th April), Portugal (19th to 22nd May) and Italy (2nd to 5th June).

Then, the series will host its iconic Safari Rally in Kenya (23rd to 26th June), before returning to Europe for races in Estonia (14th to 17th July) and Finland (4th 7th August).

The ninth slot on the calendar, which runs from 18th to 21 August, is yet to be confirmed.

The next leg of the season will see the series return to Greece (8th to 11th September), whilst New Zealand will make a return to the calendar following a 13-year absence, hosting an event from 29th September to 2nd October.

Finally, races in Spain (20th to 23rd October) and Japan (10th to 13th November) will round off the season.

As WRC Promoter continues to focus on its target to reach an even split between rallies in Europe and long-haul destinations, the 2022 WRC season will span four continents - Europe, Asia, Africa and Australasia.

In addition, 2022 marks a sustainable change in WRC regulations as the series' top-tier Rally1 cars will move to hybrid technology, utilising an electric motor and hydrocarbon-based fossil-free fuel.

"Next year will be a momentous and thrilling one for the FIA World Rally Championship as we welcome the new hybrid era Rally1 cars, part of a portfolio of regulations to drive the series towards a greener and more sustainable future," said Jona Siebel, WRC Promoter managing director.

"Next year also marks the WRC’s 50th season and we have a calendar to match. We’re delighted to welcome back New Zealand, a rally which first appeared in 1977. Its gravel roads are a drivers’ delight and although our plans to return in 2020 were unfortunately derailed by Covid-19, it’s fantastic we can now push through with those.

"The pandemic sadly brought the globe to its knees but as the world recovers so, too, does the WRC. We previously outlined our strategy for an equal spread of rallies between Europe and long-haul destinations and the 2022 calendar is a significant step towards that goal."