WRC: Drivers and teams against Turkey's return

2016-10-20 14:41:03

Plans for Turkey's return to the World Rally Championship in 2017 have met opposition from leading drivers and teams.

A delegation of Turkish officials visited last week's Rally Catalunya in an effort to convince the service park the event should rejoin the schedule for the first time since 2010.

Turkey, China and Poland are listed by the FIA as potential 2017 rounds, with either one or two of the trio set to get the nod. But WRC champion Sebastien Ogier is among those arguing that security concerns amid recent terrorism and the political instability around an attempted coup earlier this year should keep it off the calendar.

"Right now with the political situation in Turkey, I would not want to go there and I don't think it would be clever to go there," Ogier said. "But hopefully  and more for the Turkish people this situation will change and it can develop in a better way."

Citroen team boss Yves Matton echoed those sentiments.

"Turkey could be an interesting rally for the calendar, but the timing is not good," he said. "We don't know if, in one year, the security will be good for us to go there. It's maybe a rally more for 2018 than for 2017."

WRC promoter's Oliver Ciesla defended Turkey's provisional place on the calendar.

"I was there recently and the tourist season was in full flow  there was no feeling anything was wrong," he argued. "There are major events happening in Turkey, such as the UEFA Champions' League and a major basketball event is going to Istanbul.

"We are not talking about going there tomorrow, we are talking about going there in 12 months."


Originally on Autosport.com

Subscribe to Racer



RACER Magazine 25th Anniversary Video

33 years of SportsCar magazine history.

See more than 50 On Board videos.