Update: Ypres Rally returns Belgium to the WRC
Updated 14:30 Friday 18th February 2022. Belgium will host its second-ever round of the World Rally Championship in 2022, as the tarmac Rally Ypres steps in to fill a gap in the 2022 WRC calendar.
The event, which has run as a regional event for decades, was added to the 2021 calendar when the continuing Covid-19 pandemic caused multiple flyaway destinations to cancel, including Japan.
Last year’s event took place later in the season, but this year’s Ypres will fit into 18th-21st August. That spot had been left open on the calendar, with talks still carrying on in an attempt to resurrect the British round of the championship in Northern Ireland.
Those talks were confirmed to have failed earlier this year, as funding didn’t materialise to put the event on. As a result the calendar remained short of one rally, and that was filled by Ypres.
In 2021 it was home hero Thierry Neuville who won the first WRC event held in his own country, leading for the entire distance. After a difficult start for the Hyundai driver to the 2022 season, he will be hoping that a return home helps to bring an upswing in form.
The tarmac rally will take place on tight and twisty roads around Flanders, with the service park taking place right in the centre of the historic town of Ypres.