Wales Rally GB is changing forever.
The event’s organiser IMS is delighted that new laws facilitating closed-road motor sport events have come into force in Wales from today.
|The new regulations follow a long campaign by the UK governing body of four wheeled motor sport, the Motor Sports Association, and allows IMS to explore a range of new opportunities for this year’s Wales Rally GB route 4-7 October.||It would not be the first time Wales roads are closed for motorsport, as historically the International Welsh Rally used public roads, notably over Caerphilly Mountain, for speed tests, and the first licensed motor-sport event in Wales was on Buttrills Hill, Barry at the turn of the 20th century.|
“We have been working closely with the Welsh Government on achieving this exciting piece of legislation,” remarked Ben Taylor, Managing Director of Wales Rally GB. “We are already looking at what this might mean for this year’s event.
“Whether it’s the introduction of an entire special stage set on closed roads or just closing a small section of highway to link two existing forest tests, we will be considering all the options. It’s really exciting!”
The landmark development for Welsh motor sport comes after the MSA spent several years campaigning for a change in the law to allow local authorities to suspend the Road Traffic Act for authorised motor sport events, without requiring individual Acts of Parliament. New enabling legislation commenced in England on 10 April 2017.
Following a further consultation, the Welsh Government has now published its own Statutory Instrument that will facilitate closed-road motor sport in Wales from 2 February 2018. As in England, it names the MSA and its sister governing body for two-wheel UK motor sport, the Auto-Cycle Union (ACU), as the authorising bodies for closed-road motor sport events such as racing, rallying and hillclimb.