BRC boost for 2016 Jim Clark Rally

Ross Hunter and Gary White corner past spectator in Duns during the Jim Clark Rally, spectator problems causing delays resulted in later cars racing during fading light
Ross Hunter and Gary White corner past spectator in Duns during the Jim Clark Rally, spectator problems causing delays resulted in later cars racing during fading light

The MSA British Rally Championship returns in 2016 with an exciting new-look calendar to go with the revised vehicle eligibility regulations that were announced in January.

And it’s good news for the Jim Clark Rally which has been included as a tarmac event for May 27 and 28.

In what’s set to be the biggest shake-up for many years, next season’s revitalised BRC will be staged throughout the British Isles and will include a mix of gravel and asphalt surfaces to provide crews with the ultimate challenge in national rallying.

Starting in March and concluding in September, the new championship will comprise seven events, of which four are retained from previous years, while three are new or returning rounds of the championship.

The campaign opens with the Mid Wales Stages, using the legendary forests of Myherin and Hafren that test the world’s best drivers each year on Wales Rally GB. A visit to Belfast after Easter allows crew to test themselves against the FIA European Rally Championship’s top stars on the UK’s second biggest stage rally, the Circuit of Ireland, before returning to Carlisle for the first of four long-standing BRC events, the Pirelli Rally.

Having tackled Kielder over the Bank Holiday weekend, the BRC crews will take on the Borders’ asphalt for the Jim Clark Rally at the end of May. The Scottish Rally occupies its traditional date at the end of June, before an eight-week gap to the championship’s second visit to Northern Ireland for the Ulster Rally in August. The season will conclude with a journey north for the end of year celebrations at the Granite City Rally in Aberdeen, which put on such a great show earlier this year.

The inclusion of a made-for-TV one-day special event remains a possibility for 2016, subject to discussions with broadcast partners and securing a suitable venue/date.

The 2016 British Rally Championship dates, subject to approval by the MSA, are as follows: March 5/6 - Mid Wales Stages (gravel); April 8/9 - Circuit of Ireland (asphalt); April 29/30 - Pirelli Rally (gravel); May 27/28 - Jim Clark Rally (asphalt); June 24/25 - RSAC Scottish Rally (gravel); August 19/20 - Ulster Rally (asphalt); September 9/10 - Granite City Rally (gravel).