Rally to bring alive memories of the grand Southern Cross
IT'S been more than three decades since the famous Southern Cross International Rally saw cars roaring around the Coffs Coast's forest roads but its memory will be brought alive in September.
Competitors, officials and supporters of the Southern Cross will gather in Coffs Habour to reminisce during the WRC Coates Hire Rally Australia.
Featuring the biggest international and national names, the Southern Cross was staged between 1966 and 1980 on the NSW Mid North Coast. Some of the roads used for stages in those days, around Taylors Arm, are back on the itinerary for this year's World Rally Championship event.
A year short of the Southern Cross's 50th anniversary in October 2016, Clerk of Course Dan White has organised a reunion on Friday, September 11 at 8pm at the Coffs Harbour Aero Club.
"Take the whole day, watch the WRC action at Taylors Arm, have lunch at the Pub with No Beer, on to Coffs Harbour, watch crews do their stuff at Rally Australia before putting their machines into parc fermé," White writes.
"Then come on over to the Coffs Harbour Aero Club for a touch of nostalgia - lots of fun stories and reunite with friends and foe of the Southern Cross Rally.
"October 2016 will mark 50 years since the first Southern Cross Rally took place. This event launched an unforgettable 15-year period during which rallying in Australia came of age - largely due to the Cross organisers introducing international rally competition to motorsport fixtures on our home turf.
"In recognition of the event's heritage and impressive motorsport legacy, plans are underway to conduct an historic road event in the latter part of 2016.
"The informal gathering at Coffs Harbour Aero Club is likely to twig many a tale, still well-remembered some 40 years on."