Eight years after it was last held in Greece, the Acropolis Rally returns to the country on Thursday, with 55 crews from 24 different countries ready to compete in one of the toughest events of the World Rally Championship (WRC).
Greece discontinued the rally in 2013 due to financial constraints caused by the decade-long financial crisis, but in 2020, the Greek government announced it was ready to support the event.
The rally is held on rough, dusty and rocky terrain that includes mountain roads in the mainland and is known for being very challenging for cars and drivers alike.
Much of Athens city center will be closed to traffic for up to 10 hours on Thursday for the start of the rally, which for the first time will include a special run through Syntagma Square.
To facilitate drivers, all traffic around Syntagma and the Acropolis will be prohibited from 11 a.m. The prohibition on the parking and stopping of vehicles in the area will commence earlier at 6 a.m.
The event, also known as the “Rally of Gods,” is the ninth stage of the 2021 World Rally Championship. It was first held in 1951 and has appeared in the WRC 38 times.
The rally concludes on 12 September.