World Rally Championship will bring a €100m economic boost to Limerick

Motorsport Ireland has announced that Limerick, Kerry and the South East region have been selected as host locations for a bid to bring the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC) back to Ireland for the years 2025-’27.
Ireland previously featured in the Championship in 2007 and 2009, and Tuesday’s announcement is a major building block in securing a slot on the calendar for the next three years. Work on selecting a potential event base started back in August 2023, with all 32 Motorsport Ireland affiliated clubs being invited to submit suitable locations in line with the requirements of the promoters of the Championship. Following a thorough selection process, three venues, Kerry, Limerick and the South East region, remained in contention, and last week site visits took place in each location. Motorsport Ireland President Aiden Harper and Vice President John Naylor viewed each site and were accompanied by fellow section panel members; Donagh Kelly, Joe Corcoran and Seán McHugh, while Iain Campbell attended on behalf of the WRC Promoter.
Such was the quality of the proposals put forward by each venue that the selection committee, in conjunction with the WRC Promoter, have decided to rotate the venue for each of the three years Ireland are seeking to be included in the Championship.
Motorsport Ireland President Aiden Harper said: “It was an honour for me and the selection panel to see the commitment from our clubs and volunteers in the three areas putting together such strong bids to potentially host WRC Rally Ireland from 2025 onwards. In Kerry, Limerick and the South East, we have a trio of world class venues that will be ideal hubs for the event. Today’s announcement is obviously predicated on securing Government funding and this is a process that is underway at present.”
The FIA World Rally Championship is the highest level of global competition in the motorsport discipline of rallying and it is second only to Formula One in terms of following. In 2022 the series had a global TV audience of 841 million, and it has a combined social media following of 6.87 million. There is strong manufacturer involvement from the world’s biggest car brands, with Hyundai, Toyota, Ford, Citroen and Skoda all fielding cars in the Championship. The WRC is also the first-ever FIA World Championship to implement 100% fossil-free fuel. Should Rally Ireland return to these shores next year, it will be the biggest sporting event on the island of Ireland with over 200,000 spectators estimated to attend.