Manufacturers will be awarded Wolf Power Stage bonus points in next season’s FIA World Rally Championship.
A team’s two best-placed nominated drivers finishing in the top five of the rally-closing live TV stage on a Sunday lunchtime will receive the extra points in a move to add additional excitement to the manufacturers’ championship.
Power Stage points were introduced for the fastest three drivers in 2011. The system was extended to the quickest five drivers in 2017.
The introduction of manufacturers’ points was approved by the FIA World Motor Sport Council on Wednesday (16 December). Scoring will be the same as for drivers, with five points awarded for the fastest manufacturer car down to one point for the fifth quickest.
Power Stage points will also be awarded to drivers in the WRC2 and WRC3 support categories next season. The changes will be implemented in all categories from the season-opening Rallye Monte-Carlo (21 – 24 January).
Other changes include the allocation of nine extra test days in 2021 to each WRC manufacturer to help them adapt to the new Pirelli tyres that will be used for the first time next year.
In WRC2, participating teams must register no later than the closing date of the fifth round of the 2021 season. To score points, a team must enter two cars in a maximum of seven rallies, including a minimum of one round outside Europe.
WRC2 drivers and teams must nominate a scoring rally when they enter the event and the best six scores from seven nominated rallies will count.
Registered drivers can enter additional rallies with Priority 2 status without scoring points.
In WRC3, drivers will count their best five scores from seven rounds. Specific requirements will be added to restrict entries to ‘aspiring drivers developing their skills’.
The council also agreed that at least half the events scheduled on the initial WRC calendar must be held for titles to be awarded.
In the support championships, the FIA can adjust the minimum number of participations and number of events taken into account, should the number of qualifying events be less than scheduled initially.
The number of counting rounds for the Junior WRC will return to five after being reduced to four this year due to Covid-19. The Junior calendar has yet to be announced.