Rally Australia, the final round of the 2019 FIA World Rally Championship, has been cancelled after extreme bushfires across New South Wales throughout the build up to the event.
Originally planned to get underway on Thursday, the fourteenth round of the WRC had already seen its itinerary severely reduced to just 59 stage miles in a bid to reduce the risk of increasing the fires that have hit the north of Australia in recent days.
As part of the revised plans, the national championship running as part of the rally would have not took place also, but the event will now not take place at all as a result of the fires.
A statement released by the organisers of Rally Australia said: “Kennards Hire Rally Australia will not go ahead this week as a result of serious bushfires that continue to affect much of northern NSW. The cancellation today comes after extensive consultation with the NSW Government, the FIA, emergency services and the local community. Thank you for your support and understanding.”
Several teams and drivers have also publicly voiced their support of the organisers following the decision to call off the event:
The event had been set to be the final appearance for Ott Tänak with Toyota GAZOO Racing as well as the climax to the battle in the Manufacturers Championship between the Japanese team and Hyundai Motorsport.