From Ron Salter [ 22/11/2006 ].
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The Super2000 category could supercede S1600 cars as the vehicle of choice for the JWRC from 2009 onwards. According to last week's Autosport magazine, there is concern over the potential rivalry from the burgeoning IRC series, run by SRW Events and promoted by Eurosport. The IRC (Intercontinental Rally Challenge) will expand to a 9 round calendar in 2007 and is expected to have a much larger entry field than during it's debut season.
Additionally, Eurosport have pledged extensive live programming, including a proposed "update" show during each legs action.
Although the IRC is FIA sanctioned, the promotional rights of the two series' are owned by different companies, with those of the World Rally Championship being owned by International Sportworld Communications.
The WRC has been hit within the last year by a mass manufacturer withdrawal and more recently by the loss of Finnish broadcaster YLE who reportedly found the series too expensive to cover.
With several manufacturers having expressed an interest in the S2000 category with cars from Fiat, Peugeot, VW and Toyota already in existence, the FIA are keen to find a home for the new 4wd, 2 litre machines. It is thought that they may create a "second tier" WRC from 2009 which would include those events which missed out on joining the main WRC calendar.