"The FIA, it seems, has moved to prevent FIA-registered drivers from competing in the Global Rallycross series or related events in the United States.
The development comes after the accidents involving former double FIA World Rally Champion Marcus Grönholm and fellow Finn Toomas Heikkinen during practice at the end of June for the X Games in Los Angeles.
No public declaration has been made, but iRally has been told that as such events are not on the FIA international Calendar only licence holders from the USA are permitted to participate.
Global Rallycross is not an FIA-registered championship. This means FIA licence-holders cannot compete in it without breaking the International Sporting Code, the set of rules which underpins all FIA-sanctioned motorsport.
Chapter 17 of the Code includes the following:
“No driver, competitor or other licence-holder may take part in an international event or international championship that is not registered on the FIA calendars or not governed by the FIA or its Members.”
Global Rallycross has issued the following statement:
“GRC has been aware for some time of the potential implications regarding international drivers holding an FIA license competing in the Global Rallycross Championship. As a result, we have been in diligent and constant dialog with various sanctioning bodies and National Sporting Authorities on the matter and all parties are working to reach a solution to allow the continued participation of non-U.S. licensed drivers without FIA licensing interruption. While we retain the utmost respect for the FIA and the international conventions that govern motorsport, it is important during this early growth phase to assess all of the potential sanctioning opportunities before deciding on the course most appropriate for the benefit of the series, its competitors and sponsors.”
Heikkinen broke his left ankle and suffered abdominal injuries when his car crashed into the face of the landing ramp on the gap jump in Los Angeles. He spent 5 days in hospital. Grönholm also spent several days in hospital after being knocked unconscious when his car hit an exposed lamp post base. Both men are now at home in Finland.
As to the future, pending any agreement between Global Rallycross and the FIA, it would appear that the series is off-limits to any holder of an FIA licence."