FILED UNDER SOMETHINGISRAELI >> Sport
After years of political lobbying by racing drivers and fans, the Israeli parliament has given approval for the country to host organised motorsports involving cars and motorcycles.
Under the new Motorsports Law, the government has nine months in which to create the rules for staging motor racing events in Israel. Also a sports racing authority will be created within the Education, Culture and Sport Ministry.
Despite a love affair with the motor car, very few motor events have taken place because the state would prosecute those who take part in such events and insurance companies would therefore not cover them.
Currently anyone with a real passion for motor sport has to compete outside Israel. This could be one of the reasons why it took until this year for Israel to have a driver- Chanoch Nissany - compete in any Formula 1 racing.
"This is one of the happiest days of my life, it's been a long road since we started in 1970," rally driver and Israel Racing Drivers Association head Danny Levy told Israeli newspaper Haaretz.
"We had to sit down with the clerks and explain every detail, it was like building a car from scratch. Before the law was passed, motor sport vehicles such as rally cars were not considered road-worthy in the eyes of the law."
According to Levy there are around 3000 people who are active in motor sports and with the approval from parliament, this number is expected to grow. With new teams and keen interest from fans, Israeli motor sports may eventually have some world-class drivers.
For more information: www.irda.co.il