HUMDA takes over the promoter’s duties of Rally Hungary
From this year onwards, HUMDA Hungarian Motorsport Development Agency Ltd. will take over the promoter’s duties of the Hungarian round of the European Rally Championship (ERC). The event, which was very popular and exciting in the last two years, will be held in and around Nyíregyháza between 22 and 24 October. This year's championship is closer than ever, and since Rally Hungary is the penultimate round of the series, the title could well be decided here.
As the most popular motorsport discipline, rally is of great importance for the Hungarian Motorsport Development Agency Ltd., which is therefore increasing its role in the discipline. From this year on, HUMDA will be responsible for the promoter’s duties of the Hungarian round of the European Rally Championship (ERC). In August, our agency participated as a professional partner in the organisation of the 1st ZEG Rally Show, an event that attracted thousands of rally fans and created a tradition. ‘The positive experiences in Zalaegerszeg have confirmed that Hungary's place in the European Championship series should be cemented. Our goal is to have a stable ERC field visiting our country for several years to come, which is important not only because of our top competitors, but also because of the large number of rally fans in Hungary’, said Balázs Weingartner, Chairman and CEO of HUMDA Ltd.
The popularity of motorsport continues to grow around the world. From a diplomatic and a sporting point of view, it is a great honour for Hungary to host the sport's most prestigious competitions. This is in line with our country's sport policy objectives, which continue to include the organisation of as many major international sporting events as possible. HUMDA promotes Hungary's international sport policy efforts in accordance with the Hungarian Motorsport Development Strategy approved by the Government, therefore, we welcome the decision that the Agency will also be responsible for the promoter’s duties of the European Rally Championship race from this year onwards. ‘The organisation of Rally Hungary is of great importance for Nyíregyháza and the region, not only from a sporting point of view, but also from a touristic and economic point of view. We appreciate the city administration, the organisers, the promoters and everyone’s work and commitment to make it possible that Hungary and Nyíregyháza can host a round of the European Championship every year. We hope that thanks to their work we can continue to play the role of the host for many years to come’ added Dr Tünde Szabó, State Secretary for Sport and Member of Parliament for the region.
Rally Hungary is expected to attract a large number of visitors not only from Eastern Hungary and the whole country, but also from the surrounding countries, which encouraged tourism in the Eastern region last year and the year before. ‘When the European Rally Championship returned Hungary in 2019 after 16 years of absence, the national and international promoter chose Nyíregyháza and its neighbourhood as the venue for a reason. Besides the geographic conditions that provide perfect setting for a gravel rally race, the people here love motorsport, especially rally – as anyone who visited the stages in the last two years could see themselves’ said Dr Ferenc Kovács, Mayor of Nyíregyháza.
As one of the final rounds of the calendar, there is also a chance that the European Championship title will be decided in Hungary. The Hungarian pair of Norbert Herczig and Ramón Ferencz is a permanent participant in the ERC and recognised top-level competitor this year. In ERC2 category, Jr. Tibor Érdi and Zoltán Csökő are fighting for defending their European title. ‘As Rally Hungary to be held on 22-24 October is one of the last rounds of the calendar, there is even more attention on us. Each pair has to give their best here, as the result of the Hungarian race will have a big impact on the final classification of the series. Alongside the ERC round, the final round of the national rally championship will also be held in parallel, and a big battle is expected, as several rally drivers will be competing for the title. All of the above may guarantee that this year, hopefully without Covid restrictions, there will again be plenty of spectators at the stages, so there could be no complaints about the atmosphere" said Gyárfás Oláh, President of the Hungarian National Motorsports Association.
The 2020 Rally Hungary, which ended almost minutes before the second wave of the coronavirus outbreak, was organised in extremely difficult circumstances, as it had to comply with very strict Covid protocol. ‘This year it is a big help for us that the Appendix S (Covid Conduct appendix) of the International Sporting Code of the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA) shall not apply to the European Rally Championship, and there are no appropriate government restrictions that might affect the organisation of the event. There is only one restriction: access to restricted areas such as the Rabócsiring is only allowed with an Immunity Card according to the regulations for sporting events. Certainly, the extremely popular Superspecial in Rabócsiring will not be left out of the programme this year, and we will hold the now traditional Nyíregyháza city stage on Sunday morning, too," said Tamás Őry, Managing Director of Truck Race Promotion Ltd.