The FIA has revealed new rules for third drivers for next season and asked the World Rally Championship Commission to consider a number of cost-cutting measures for the WRC.

The FIA has revealed new rules for third drivers for next season and asked the World Rally Championship Commission (WRCC) to consider a number of cost-cutting measures for the WRC.

CARtoday.com reported last month that WRCC had submitted a proposal to the FIA, motorsport’s governing body, stating that should a WRC team field more than two drivers - the third pilot must not have scored a podium in the rally series in the previous three years.

Following a meeting in Paris on Wednesday, the World Motor Sport Council of the FIA decided to adopt the rule for the 2004 season.

The FIA further asked the WRCC to consider a number of cost-cutting measures for the upcoming seasons - including running rallies over four days. The most dramatic of the recommendations is the adoption of the "Mille Pistes" concept, which would see the pre-rally reconnaissance integrated with the actual event. In other words, the crews would track the stages in their rally cars on the afternoon before they were run.

Although the length of each rally would be extended to four days, the loss of individual “recces” would save a total of 42 competition days. The World Motor Sport Council believes that this saving, when combined with its cost-cutting recommendations, would enable the WRC calendar to be increased from 14 to 16 events.

The Council has also recommended that manufacturers be only allowed to test in one country of their choosing, that the concept of flexi-servicing be extended so that team's can only service one of their cars at a time, and that base-to-car and car-to-base telemetry be banned.

For 2005 onwards, the Council has suggested that control tyres and standard sealed components be introduced. For 2006, the Council wants to consider the use of normally aspirated engines instead of the current turbo-charged units.