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WRC set for Paraguay debut in 2025

WRC Promoter signs long-term agreement to bring the FIA World Rally Championship to Paraguay.

Paraguay will become the 38th country to host a round of the FIA World Rally Championship when the South American nation joins the calendar in 2025*.

The announcement was made on Saturday evening in the Paraguayan capital Asunción by President Santiago Peña at the Ceremonial Start of Petrobras Rally Transchaco 2024 – the third round of the Paraguayan national championship.

“Paraguay is big, and the world is in the process of discovering us and hosting world-class events such as the WRC, is yet another way to show the world our greatness,” expressed President Peña.

The significant multi-year agreement realises WRC Promoter’s long-held ambition to returning to two events annually in South America.

Paraguay boasts a strong rallying heritage with the sport thriving in the heart of South America. Gustavo Saba was a regular face in Argentinian rounds of the WRC throughout the 2010s and, more recently, Fabrizio Zaldivar has become an established WRC2 competitor while Diego Dominguez is among the Junior WRC and WRC3 title favourites. The last 11 editions of the FIA CODASUR South American Rally Championship have also been won by Paraguayan drivers.

WRC Promoter’s proactive approach in creating a more sustainable pathway for the future of rallying played a major role in Paraguay bidding to be part of the championship. Paraguay generates 100 per cent of its grid electricity from sustainable resources, echoing the sustainable ethos of the WRC, which sees all cars run on 100 per cent fossil-free fuel.

“We have been in discussions with Paraguay already for a number of years and I am incredibly pleased to see this agreement across the line,” expressed WRC Senior Event Director Simon Larkin, who was on-site to mark the special announcement.

“There is no questioning the nation’s passion for rallying and we cannot wait to transmit this passion, as well as Paraguay’s spectacular scenery, around the world.”

FIA President Mohammed Ben Sulayem said: “Welcoming Paraguay to the FIA World Rally Championship in 2025 is a fantastic opportunity for the series and all its stakeholders to explore new horizons. I would like to extend my sincere thanks to my friend Hugo R. Mersan Galli, Chairman of the Touring y Automóvil Club Paraguayo, and his team, for their efforts in developing our sport, to the organisers of Rally Paraguay and to the President of Paraguay Mr Santiago Peña for his invaluable support.”

Based out of the touristic southern city of Encarnacion on the Paraná River, the rally is set to welcome masses of fans from across the border in Argentina, as well as from across the South American continent. Stages will take place throughout the Itapúa region which annually hosts a round of the FIA CODASUR South American Rally Championship on red gravel roads running parallel to the spectacularly stunning Parana River.