The city of Belfast will again be a key host for the Circuit of Ireland Rally in 2015. The event organisers announced that the ceremonial start will take place at the City Hall on Thursday 2 April.
The Circuit, which will run across stages in counties Antrim and Down, will be part of the FIA European Rally Championship for the second year and counts as round two of the 2015 FIA ERC Junior Championship.
The rally will finish back in Belfast on the evening of Saturday April 4 and the ceremonial finish will take place at the city’s Titanic Quarter, the site of the Rally HQ and Service Park, which will welcome over 1,000 competitors and team personnel over four days from Wednesday 1 April.
“I am delighted that the Circuit of Ireland Rally has once again chosen Belfast for its ceremonial start and finish line.” said Belfast’s Lord Mayor, Councillor Nichola Mallon. “Following on from the success of last year’s rally, I have no doubt that this year’s event will be bigger and better.
Circuit of Ireland Event Director Bobby Willis said the organising team was keen to build on the huge success of the 2014 event.
“Last year’s ceremonial start at Belfast City Hall created an amazing atmosphere for fans and provided a great welcome for rally stars from across Europe so we’re thrilled that Belfast City Council is partnering with us again.
“The stages across counties Antrim and Down were massively successful, attracting almost 74,000 spectators while over 14 million viewers across the world watched the various stages in 2014 on Eurosport and its global media partners.
“This year we hope to make our legendary event even bigger and better and we’re confident that fans will enjoy another fantastic line-up of world-class drivers across challenging stages.
“We’re delighted that the Circuit of Ireland is part of the prestigious FIA European Rally Championship and Junior Championship for the second year and we look forward to welcoming some of the great up and coming young drivers from overseas.”
The 2014 Circuit of Ireland Rally was won by Esapekka Lappi who also went on to be crowned the 2014 European Rally Champion.