The 2021 FIA ERC season will kick off with the completion of the 55th edition of the Azores Rallye, which will take place on a new date, between 6 and 8 May, as a result of the reformulation of the sports calendar in response to the pandemic crisis in Covid-19.
Grupo Desportivo Comercial, the event organizer, was ready to take the 2021 edition to the roads of São Miguel on the dates initially scheduled. However, due to the postponement of both Serras de Fafe e Felgueiras Rally and Islas Canarias Rally, Grupo Desportivo Comercial opted, reinforcing its partnership and commitment with Eurosport Events, to occupy the date left open by the Spanish rally, thus allowing to maintain the fluidity of the European Rally Championship, and avoiding a empty space of 120 days without events.
For Rui Moniz, head of Grupo Desportivo Comercial, “this repositioning in the calendar along with opening the championship hostilities makes Grupo Desportivo Comercial proud once more and confirms the excellence of the Azores Rallye, as a sporting event, which also serves as a promotion tool for the Azores in the world. It will also serve to answer the need to carry out the rally on a date that is further from the current moment, given the current pandemic crisis”.
AZORES RALLYE WILL NOT COUNT FOR THE PORTUGUESE RALLY CHAMPIONSHIP
However, it was with deep sadness that the Board of Grupo Desportivo Comercial received confirmation that Azores Rallye is out of the calendar of the 2021 edition of the Portuguese Rally Championship (CPR).
According to information from the Portuguese Automobile and Karting Federation, responsible for defining the main Portuguese rally championship, the reason is exclusively related to the need to contain costs, to guarantee the presence of a high number of competitors. An exceptional measure, in an exceptional year, in which the Rally Casinos do Algarve is also left out.
Grupo Desportivo Comercial reiterates the importance it recognizes to the Portuguese Rally Championship, a fundamental competition for the organizer and where the Azores Rallye has been active since 1968.
Rui Moniz said that “in 2020 we had already increased support to competitors for CPR, which we are trying to reinforce for the current year, with the club committing itself to guarantee the necessary conditions for the event to return to the competition in 2022.“