Organisers of the World Rally Championship’s Wales Rally GB have welcomed new government legislation on closed-roads motorsport events in the country.

Following a campaign run by the Motor Sports Association, the Welsh Government has changed its laws to allow local authorities to suspend the Road Traffic Act for authorised motorsport events without requiring individual Parliament Acts, with similar legislation coming into action in England in April last year.

Wales Rally GB organisers have been thrilled with the decision as it opens up the event’s stage possibilities with Managing Director Ben Taylor hinting at an entirely new special stage on closed roads.

“We have been working closely with the Welsh Government on achieving this exciting piece of legislation,” Taylor said. “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.”

2017 Wales Rally GB winner and local WRC star Elfyn Evans has thrown his support behind the decision and is confident this year’s event can become a bigger success because of it.

“Wales has some of the best driving roads in Europe and this initiative will provide the perfect platform to showcase the very best of the Welsh countryside,” Evans said. “With the success of events like Dayinsure Wales Rally GB, Welsh motor sport is very much on the up and this will only encourage even more visitors to our region.”

The law change was announced by Welsh Government Cabinet Secretary for Economy and Transport Ken Skates, the same minister who shut down the Circuit of Wales project last year, while the new legislation could potentially add momentum to a planned motorbike road racing event in the country.

The final route of the 2018 WRC Wales Rally GB will be announced in April.

 

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