North One Television and its subsidiary International Sportsworld Communicators Limited [ISC] have concluded a long term agreement with the FIA for the World Rally Championship, it has been announced today.
From the start of 2010 until the end of 2020 the ISC will be the 'Championship Promoter' as well as the holder of the global media and commercial rights.
The agreement, which is being finalised by the respective legal teams and the terms of which will be put to the FIA World Motor Sport Council for ratification, was announced in Ireland on Thursday in advance of the start of the 2009 WRC season.
“We received significant interest in this tender but ISC, with its experience in rallying and its ambitious plans for the Championship, proved a worthy winner,” said FIA president, Max Mosely. “We can now look forward with a great deal of optimism as ISC implements its comprehensive strategy for the Championship's future.”
Since 1996, ISC has licensed the FIA's media rights to the Championship but responsibility for the promotion of the events has been divided between ISC, the FIA and the event organisers themselves.
Last year, the FIA World Motor Sport Council agreed to appoint a single global promoter to take responsibility for developing interest and participation in the Championship and raising its global profile.
An open tendering process followed with the winning tender selected by a panel made up of event Organisers, the World Rally Championship Commission and representatives of the FIA.
“This represents the start of a new era for the sport – a genuine opportunity for everyone involved in WRC to work together to build something special for the future,” added Neil Duncanson, North One CEO and ISC chairman. “We are really excited about the challenge, especially reaching out to new rally fans as our media landscape morphs into the digital age.”