Georgia to host launch of International Automobile Federation's search for rally talent

  • The slalom driving event on Sunday will make Georgia the first country to host an in-person round of the new project, while Finland will launch the digital part of the competition. Photo: FIA., 8 Feb 2021 - 16:29, Tbilisi,Georgia

Georgia will host the launch of the International Automobile Federation's FIA Rally Star project that looks to discover young racing talent from around the world and support their development.

In capital Tbilisi, the first leg of a multi-round national competition for revealing the country's most gifted rally enthusiasts will be held this Sunday, with the ultimate winners of the local contest set to be selected for the Europe-wide, FIA-level events later.

On February 14, the location of the Dinamo Arena stadium's parking lot will welcome applicants in slalom driving with identical cars. The results of the contest - based both on driving precision and timing - will be used to pick 30 boys and 15 girls to qualify for the next round.

Beside the capital, the FIA Rally Star Georgia competition will also run events in the eastern city of Telavi, as well as Kutaisi in the west. Each of the rounds will identify 20 boys and 10 girls for the final national round in Tbilisi in March, which will reveal the young racing drivers picked for the continental contest.

The Georgian Automobile Sport Federation said rally enthusiasts aged between 18-26 could apply for the national rounds, with capacity of each round capped at 150 participants.

On its part, the FIA will organise finals on each continent, picking seven drivers to give them the opportunity to take part in the 2022 Training Season that involves a "comprehensive programme including FIA-delivered training, eight practice days and six rallies in an M-Sport Ford Fiesta Rally3".

Eventually, four drivers will be selected for participation in the FIA Junior World Rally Championship programme in 2023, with the list narrowed down to three for 2024, when the programme will aim to have one of the participants win the youth championship title.