The World Motor Sport Council approved the first nine events for the 2021 FIA World Rally Championship (WRC) as Spain and Australia makes a return.

While the 2020 WRC calendar is being re-worked amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the WMSC approved the initial rounds for the 2021 season with nine events revealed as Rally Spain and Rally Australia makes a return – the former as part of the rotational system.

Australia, meanwhile, did not take place in 2019 WRC season due to bushfire and pulled out of 2020 due to lack of visitors. New Zealand was then drafted in but they have cancelled their event due to COVID-19 pandemic.

Of the nine venues confirmed, some of them were already known to happen since 2019. The dates, though, of the WRC events is yet to be confirmed. The nine names are Monte Carlo, Sweden, Finland, Spain, Japan, Australia, Italy, Kenya and Portugal.

Among those, the rallies in Finland, Kenya and Portugal stands cancelled for the 2020 WRC season, while Italy is still looking for a new date with confirmation on Japan – whether or not that they will stage the event – is still awaited.

The WMSC also approved the engine allocation change to two from three if there is eight or fewer rounds this year. Testing is also limited to just one day per driver for the manufacturers’ teams for the European WRC rounds.

Looking at the 2021 WRC season, the event in Monte Carlo is subjected to promoters’ agreement. Interestingly, it is noted as a Tarmac rally as opposed to being a Mixed one, with Sweden the only one under Snow category.

Here’s note on Wales Rally GB cancellation

Here’s information on WRC cancelling Rally New Zealand

Here’s decision to cancel Rally Finland