Tuesday, May 28, 2024

Department responds to Motorsport Ireland claims, Kerry’s World Rally Championship bid withdrawal explained

Must read

The Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media has responded to claims by Motorsport Ireland that it failed to have an economic assessment completed ahead of the deadline for the World Rally Championship bid in 2025.

Motorsport Ireland stated on Tuesday that Ireland is no longer being considered to host the event as the Government would need “at least six months” to undertake further independent economic assessments and analysis of its proposal. Kerry appeared poised to benefit economically from the event as one of the service hubs and communication centres.

But the Department stated that it is not in a position to commit significant public monies to the hosting of the World Rally Championship in 2025, and that it has offered to commit public funds towards an independent economic analysis and business case being carried out, should Motorsport Ireland be amenable to hosting the World Rally Championship in later years.

The Department noted that Motorsport Ireland has offered its appreciation for this offer to undertake the necessary independent economic analysis required. The Department’s statement reads:

“Motorsport Ireland sought State support to host rounds of the FIA World Rally Championship in 2025, 2026 and 2027, to the value of €4 million per annum. In response to this proposal, the Major Sports Events Unit of the Department of Tourism, Culture, Arts, Gaeltacht, Sport and Media examined the materials submitted by Motorsport Ireland.

“In its assessment, the Department also considered the experience in Ireland, and outside of Ireland, in terms of hosting this event in the past. The Department also engaged with key stakeholders including Fáilte Ireland and Sport Ireland.

“Following this assessment by the Department and engagement with Motorsport Ireland, the Department identified potential issues regarding Motorsport Ireland’s proposal, including the likely return on investment, the displacement impacts of holding an event in busy tourism months, and capacity concerns.

“It is important to note that a Government decision is needed in order to approve the allocation of the significant resources required for hosting major sports event, like the World Rally Championship, including in areas such as security, transport and other logistics. It should also be noted that any decision by Government to provide funding to support the hosting of major sporting events needs to be underpinned by an independent economic analysis and business case.

“In light of the need for more detailed assessment and further information and given that Motorsport Ireland proposes to host the World Rally Championship in a relatively short time, the Department is unable to commit to public monies towards supporting an event starting in 2025, given the need for further and thorough assessment.”

Latest article