Rally Japan organizers have changed the route of September's event to avoid the stage where Francois Duval's co-driver Patrick Pivato was seriously injured after the pair's Stobart Ford crashed off the road.
The Yuparo stage, which caused the Belgian driver's out in 2008 will not feature on the itinerary for this year's Rally Japan, but clerk of the course Dimar Krivtsov says this has nothing to do with the safety aspect of the test.
Krivtsov said: "We have taken out the stage where Duval had his unfortunate accident. We're using another one instead.
"It's not because the stage was unsafe – it passed the FIA's scrutiny, but we just don't want people to have any negative associations with the rally and for the Ford guys it wouldn't be very comfortable. It's a normal thing to do."
Pivato has retired from rallying, but he made a full recovery from the leg and pelvic injuries he suffered.