In a move to bring the sport of Rally competition to the forefront of American motorsports and restore its rich history and legacy in auto racing, the United States Auto Club reached an agreement with the American Rally Association to bring the sport directly under the USAC operations effective immediately.
“The sport of Rally aligns well within the USAC view of motorsports with its extreme racing action over dirt roads, through tree-lined forests and led by grassroots passionate racers,” said Kevin Miller, CEO of USAC Racing in a press release. “While we have sanctioned Rally competition since 2013, this new direction will allow us to increase our focus with additional assets and personnel to strengthen and unify Rally competition throughout the USA. We are extremely excited to get to work building on the great start ARA achieved in 2017.”
With added support provided by USAC’s involvement, which includes additional staffing, daily oversight, technical and marketing operations, the sport of Rally will have a firm foundation from which it can grow and expand. Additionally, as a member of ACCUS-FIA, USAC brings needed alignment into world rally sport for ARA in the coming years.
New marketing assets will be a key first step in enhancing the tremendous start ARA achieved in its first year of operation in 2017. Additional announcements are expected in the coming weeks regarding personnel placements, sponsorship announcements, contingency programs and new marketing initiatives.
Meridith Croucher, the event chair for the Waste Management Susquehannock Trail Performance Rally, one of the core six events of the ARA National Championship series, is pleased with this change, which she considers to be a benefit to the events and to the sport in the U.S.
“Looking forward to 2018, the STPR organizing committee meetings have started,” Croucher said. “I feel confident competitors will get the same quality event always experienced at STPR.”
She added the organizers will maintain control over the operations of their respective individual events and a voice in the USAC and ARA organizations.
“With USAC on board, I think things will only get better,” Croucher said. “Organizers have huge involvement and we continue to meet monthly. The organizers are key to success in Rally and USAC doesn’t want to change that.”
She added Miller is an advocate of growing the sport and with his track record with USAC, especially in his day-to-day management, his skills set will be a benefit in areas that were weak in the past.
The ARA, founded in 2016 as a non-profit enterprise, is supported by leading Rally organizers across the United States. Featuring a national series comprised of premier Rally events in 2017, ARA’s efforts to create a united effort led by seasoned Rally enthusiasts proved to be very successful.
ARA sanctions some of the nation’s premier Rally events such as the Oregon Trail Rally, Susquehannock Trail Performance Rally, Olympus Rally, New England Forest Rally, Ojibwe Forests Rally, Idaho Rally, Tour de Forest Rally and the Tri-State Rally.
Since 1956 USAC has proven itself as being the most diversified motorsports sanctioning body in the world. It is the official sanctioning body of many of today’s largest racing series including its own suite of circle track series in Sprint, Midget and .25 Midget racing (quarter midgets), Pirelli World Challenge, Red Bull Global Rallycross, International Snowmobile Racing, Robby Gordon Stadium Trucks, TORC Off Road Championship, Ultra 4 Racing, Formula Race Promotions and Karting. USAC has over 17,000 competitors racing at more than 1,000 sanctioned events globally.