Prospective World Rally Championship promoter and broadcaster Eurosport
appears to have run into an unforeseen problem that may lead to this month's Swedish Rally losing its television coverage.
According to iRally
, the deal which would have allowed Eurosport Events to formally take over from North One Sport as the official promoter of the WRC was put on hold last night (1 February), with European Employment Law thought to be at the heart of the issue.
At one point, it appeared that talks between the French-based broadcaster and WRC officials had broken down completely, but subsequent reports claimed that the situation wasn't quite as bleak as first thought, with both sides still keen to make something happen for the good of the sport. Speculation suggests that legislation governing the protection of employees in the event of a takeover may be causing an unforeseen headache for both parties, and forcing the negotiations to slow to a crawl as lawyers determine whether Eurosport Events taking over from NOS - and North One Television - requires the latter's employees, made redundant when the FIA cancelled its contract, to be found positions at the former.
While Rally Sweden works with the FIA on arranging potential alternatives to ensure the event receives some television coverage, the report suggests that it may still be possible for Eurosport
to act as broadcaster until such time as the legal aspects regarding employees are sorted out.