All Over for Internationale Jännerrallye
The Internationale Jännerrallye in the Freistadt area/Province of Upper Austria will not take place in 2016. This was announced by the Board of the Rallye Club Mühlviertel following an Extraordinary General Meeting on June 2 in Freistadt.
„The entire Board of Directors will put all their functions at the disposal of a newly- to- be-elected management body, provided that an election proposal, meeting the approval of the General Meeting, will be submitted by the date of the Regular General Meeting on September 18, 2015. If not, the current Board of Directors will be available to the Rallye Club Mühlviertel for one more year, but will not organize any motor sports events in the coming year and therefore also not the Internationale Jännerrallye. This approach is meant to assure the existence of the Rallye Club Mühlviertel”, explains Chairman Ferdinand Staber.
„No Financial Problems“
Specifically, on behalf of the entire Board of Directors, Staber maintains that: „The Rallye Club Mühlviertel has no financial problems. Despite the existence of a letter of intent by Eurosport that the Internationale Jännerrallye should be a fixed part of the European Rallye Championship (ERC) until 2018, we are not prepared to organize the Internationale Jännerrallye 2016“, Staber states the clear reasons for this decision.
1. Development of Nominations/Starters
Since 2012, the trend in the number of participants steadily pointed downwards. ERC: minus 45 %, Austrian Championship (ORM): minus 17 % (see statistics appendix). A trend reversal within the foreseeable future is not in sight, since many teams are fighting financial difficulties.
2. High Financial Risk
The RCM must cover at least 30% of its budget of 650000 – 700000 Euros annually out of the revenue from the spectators. Due to the not foreseeable weather situation the risk is extremely high.
3. Explosion of Costs
Operating costs of the Internationale Jännerrallye developed in the opposite direction of the nominations and increased by 47% since 2012 (see appendix).
3. Lack of Acceptance
As expressed by Austrian Drivers Representative Mario Saibel in his e-mail to the Chairman of the IG Rallye, Michael Strassegger (see appendix), the Internationale Jännerrallye, for reasons of costs, is not desirable any more as an Austrian State Championship competition. As a further example, the Austrian rallye establishment called for a boycott of the winter classic in the Mühlviertel.
4. FIA and Eurosport Negligent
For years, the RCM has criticized that the International Motor Sports Federation, FIA, and Eurosport, are neither capable nor willing to establish by mid-August an ERC-Calendar for the next year although the RCM has repeatedly demanded this. FIA’s inability to timely establish a clear set of rules resulted in the loss of at least 10 – 15 starters for the Internationale Jännerrallye 2015.
5. Eurosport Broadcast Times
Although already confirmed for 2015, bringing forward the broadcasting times on Eurosport is not possible. Broadcasts after 11.00 p.m., at least in the Austrian and European area, are not considered prime time.
Because the Board of Directors of the RCM does not expect positive changes regarding the addressed points, the decision not to organize the Internationale Jännerrallye 2016 was unanimous.
In concluding, Chairman Ferdinand Staber takes stock of the RCM’s motor sports activities between 2003 and 2015:
During this period in the Mühlviertel region, and also in accordance with international standards, superbly organized and executed without any accidents:
Twelve times the Internationale Jännerrallye, as well as three times each the Pirelli Shootout for the Rallye World Championship and the Mühlviertel Rallye.
Total revenue of more than 5 million Euros; the indirect return to be calculated at approximately 40 – 45 million Euros.