The Manx National Rally, planned for May 14 and 15, has been cancelled because of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.
Organiser and promoter Manx Auto Sport had been in the advanced stages of planning for the two-day rally which would see a host of competitors from across the UK and beyond contest over 120 stage miles across the island’s roads.
However, due to the uncertainties surrounding the Coronavirus pandemic, the restrictions imposed by the UK and Isle of Man authorities, current lockdown legislation and implications of running a large-scale event which brings around 1,000 people from the UK mainland to the island, organisers have no choice but to cancel the May event.
Mark Quayle, Clerk of the Course, said: ‘MAS regrets to announce that the 2021 Manx National Rally will not go ahead. Much like last year, this has not been an easy decision for the organising team who have been working hard behind the scenes to deliver another memorable rally on the island. But with so many uncertainties with restrictions and the large number of officials, competitors, support teams and volunteers that we draw in from the UK and even further afield, it would be impossible to predict the situation in May. We have left our decision as late as possible, but we have reached a critical stage in our planning and it is not possible to guarantee that an event of such a large scale could go ahead.’
Enterprise Minister Laurence Skelly added: ‘Whilst we are obviously very disappointed in the cancellation, we do understand the reasons for this and the difficulty in proceeding with such a commitment with the levels of uncertainty still in place. We have every confidence that the organisers will be able to bring back the event with a strong return, and as a Department we look forward to welcoming visitors once again to our wonderful Island when the time is right.’
The PokerStars Rally, scheduled to run on October 1 and 2 is still set to go ahead as normal should the current restrictions be lifted and the Manx National Rally is set to return on May 13/14 in 2022.