Car racing is one of the most popular modern day sports, attracting big sponsorships, global audiences, and fame (and sometimes, notoriety) for drivers. The first car race on record was a 2-kilometre long race held in France in the year 1887 but there was only one car in the race. In 1884, the first competition involving motor vehicles was held, covering the road from Paris to Rouen. The actual winner was disqualified because his car did not meet race standards, so the official winner was George Lemaitre, driving a Peugeot.
This might be called the first rally race, where drivers were required to cover the stages in the shortest time possible and there was always the chance of running into regular vehicles. The sport became popular across the continent and after World War I, the Monte Carlo Rally was first held.
Since then it has been considered one of the stages of the World Rally Championship. As roads became more crowded rallies were shifted to less populated areas in Sweden and Finland.
The 1960s saw car rallies becoming more rigorous in terms of routes and regulations. There was one rally event for drivers and another for manufacturers.
By the 1970s, championships were covering terrain outside Europe, and this added to the thrills and challenges for drivers. The World Rally Championship was help in Monte Carlo, in 1973, and became the first WRC event. The era of the Group B is still fondly recalled by many fans. This was a time when specially made cars, monsters of the road, would compete for the title.
The speed was thrilling but the design of cars was deemed flawed, and thus they were banned from WRC. The 1990s saw the rise of Group A cars, which were lighter and smaller. They were also safer. Motorsports today offer much thrill, action, and are a huge draw for spectators from across the world.