ORGANISERS of Rally Jamaica are announcing that this leg will be the final round of the North American Central American (NACAM) Rally series.
"This is an awesome opportunity for local rallying," Larry Henriques, event organiser, told Auto.
According to Henriques, the start date of Rally Jamaica was moved to November 29 this year to accommodate its inclusion in the series. The event will now run over three days to December 1.
"As an FIA [Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile] championship, the NACAM Rally series has to be wrapped in time for their December 6 prize-giving gala where all the major trophies are handed out," explained Henriques.
The six-round NACAM series enjoys full support from the FIA, motorsports' governing body, which will be transferred to Rally Jamaica in the form of increased exposure and competitor numbers.
Established in 2008, the NACAM Rally Championship is an international rally championship international in scope and is run under the auspices of the FIA. It is held across North America, Central America and South America. The core of the championship is in Mexico and Costa Rica.
Rally Jamaica 2013 is already listed on the FIA's official calendar. The event will also be featured in a one-hour production to be broadcast internationally on Fox Sport 1.
Interest is already at fever pitch, and Henriques is fielding applications from around the world.
"So far, Rally Jamaica has seven UK-based competitors who have stated their intent to enter, with three confirmed. Six are expected from Trinidad and two from Barbados," he said.
For 2013, the rally will continue mostly unchanged, but will welcome back the trip to St Ann on the Saturday for fans' favourite loop in the Lydford mining area.
"Drivers and spectators were asking when we'd return to Reynolds. As we had to meet the stage distance requirements for an FIA championship event, this was the perfect opportunity," he added.
The following Sunday will see the cars going back to Bog Walk's Orange Groves and then culminating in downtown Kingston.
Last year's Rally Jamaica was won by Jamaica's Jeffery Panton with co-driver Mike Fennell, Jr.