Belgium is set to feature on the World Rally Championship’s schedule for the first time after Rally Ypres was added to the revised 2021 calendar.
The event, which has run since 1965, was drafted into the amended 2020 calendar on a November date but had to be called off due to tightened Covid-19 restrictions in Belgium.
On Friday WRC organisers announced that the UK’s proposed round in Northern Ireland has been deferred until 2022 due to uncertainty over public funding relating to Covid-19.
Ypres Rally Belgium is set to be held in August with a service park in the town’s Grote Markt.
It is the latest amendment to the 2021 schedule in the wake of February’s planned Rally Sweden being cancelled.
The new campaign is due to begin with Rallye Monte Carlo on January 21.
“The 2021 calendar has been developed against the backdrop of the challenges brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic and we knew we would possibly face ongoing issues in this new year,” said FIA Rally Director Yves Matton.
“Bobby Willis and his team have put in a lot of work and efforts to bring the WRC to Northern Ireland and we’re very disappointed there will be no rally in the UK this year.
“It is a chance for Ypres Rally Belgium to step in after last year’s attempt.
“It will showcase the DNA of rally with a route that links Ypres to Spa-Francorchamps, two iconic venues of Belgian motorsport. I very much look forward to it.”