why? not a flippant question - it doesn't seem any different to when I used to watch it 10 years ago? Not that I watch it much...
Why? because it's absolutely rubbish now. Ten- Fifteen years ago you had several factory teams- Ford, Subaru, Seat, Peugoet, Skoda, Lancia, Toyota, Mitsubishi, Proton, Citroen etc all with 3 works cars each- anyone in the top 12 drivers could potentially win an event. You had McRae, Makkinen, Gronholm, Burns, Sainz, Kankkunen, Loix, Auriol, Biasion etc etc battling for the lead in cars that went sideways at every oportunity. The events would last 4-5 days and take in the whole of the country with stagesa of different character. Stages would run 7am to well into darkness and was a real test of man and machine.
This was Gp A and early WRC regs- group B that came before was even better still but thats a different story altogether.
WRC today has just Ford and Citroen (and don't be supprised when one of them goes at seasons end!), and just a couple of drivers of merit- Loeb is a great driver but his success has come due to a lack of real opposition- would he have won 30+ rallies back in the 80's and 90's?
The events have become so boring too. Concentrated in too small an area with just 3-4 stages per day repeated in the afternoon. Any sign of adverse weather the stage is cancelled and they are all tucked away in bed before dark. Its not really taxing is it? Compact routes were designed for the media- a mainstream media that doesn't care. The speciallist media will tell you that they liked darting around the country 20 hours a day trying to keep up. Its what attracted them to becoming motoring journalists in the bloody first place!
I dearly loved the WRC once, I followed it all over Europe as a spectator, marshall, engineer, mechanic, chase crew and even navigated on the RAC rally in the early 90's but it is a pale shadow of what it once was. I should be laid to rest now- it's like an old family pet that should be put down.