Antibes Cote d’Azur Rally - back to the future?
The Antibes Cote d’Azur Rally has been included in the European Championship since 1971, however, the ASA Antibes’ Directing Committee has decided to take it out from it.
As we too often see the success of the sporting side of the rallye, we tend to forget all about the substructures constraints, the security ones or the communication and the international specifications ones, etc, which ask for a generous involvement from numerous and essential organization members, as well as a proper budget up to the event.
The non-subscription of the Antibes Rallye to the National Championship since 2001, was not letting it gain the press cover which it would have deserved, and the following consequences have become very negatives: most of the advertisers have been difficult to convince, constructors make it difficult to propose our rallye into their promotion perimeters, cars owners are on stand bye, the pilots cannot offer any media plans to their sponsors which slows down the engagement list.
These difficulties are not rewarded by the European Championship’s label, a high level championship situated between the WRC which gains a lot of the press releases and the IRC Challenge which promotion is done by Eurosport. For a couple of years the best pilots, the partners and the press have taken part, first of all, in those events neglecting the ERC, which makes it so difficult the promotion of our Rallye.
Today a rumor says that maybe a fusion may be possible between the ERC-IRC without yet knowing what would be the selection rules or which events would be selected for the next championship. However, it will always be asked us to complete a specification book even more complicated and rigorous.
In order to stay at the highest European level, for ten years the ASA Antibes has always tried to make innovations and found solutions in order to control costs despite the permanent rise of costs which penalizes more and more each year’s expenses. The most recent one has been the security services expenses’ rise and the subscription to the Natura 2000 regulation. The fidelity of all the sponsors that have followed us appreciating the rigor of the organization as well as our participation to the local economy and the region’s one for the autumn season, have allowed us to organize this wonderful racing sport event.
In 2011 the Provence Alpes Cote d’Azur region had decided to no longer support the mechanics sport events. We did accept and understood this decision which clearly must have been taken under environmental requirements rules. However, our Antibes’Rallye signs a carbon statement very satisfying, which, we do think, could have found its way through all the a priori regarding the mechanics sports, which are far from being, despite what is said, the most polluting of the popular sports.
Nevertheless, the direct consequence of this decision was that the budgetary imbalance increased as the main sponsor decreased its donations. Therefore, our directing committee has decided that re-equilibrating the budget was mandatory in order to survive and to give us a chance to come back to a higher level more quickly.
This is why we have taken the decision to enroll the 2012 Antibes rally into a National French Rally Cup and to apply (after agreement of the Region’s committee and the FFSA) to the French Championship in 2013. Without loosing sight of the IRC, the FIA European Historic Championship Rally etc… we shall examinate the specifications to come and their consequences on the previsionnal budgets in order to organize an event with a good media coverage.
The past experiences are building our future: 6 World champions ( including Didier Auriol and Sebastien Loeb), 10 European champions, all the French champions, all the big names of the French championship, tens and tens of foreigners pilots, have showed off their talents through our Antibes Cote d’Azur Rally; our event is named as an exemple by a lot of mechanics’ clubs leaders.
FIA’s observers have always recognized the high level quality of our Rallye, the FFSA ‘s President has honored us of his presence and of his interest in our Rallye, we have created the Trident Challenge with the commitment of the Belgium, the Spanish and the Italians organizators and we have raised friendships between most European Rallye organizations. The name of the Antibes Rallye brings foreigners and French tourists who sees through it a touristic destination. We have always been on top to the rigor, the security and environmental checks, spectators come all along the tracks.
In our winning back project, we know we can count on our all time partners such as the City of Antibes, the Council of Alpes Maritimes and the PACA Region , as well as all our private partners which insure us today their constant support.
One thing is certain: for the 130 years old of Juan Les Pins, the start of the Rallye will take place from the famous Pinède Gould perpetrate in it the constant tradition manifest by our club to associate the devotee, the enthusiasts and the collectors.
Let’s meet on October 2012, the adventure continues