Rally dates now confirmed

IT’S official – September 5 to 11 next year has been confirmed as the one of the biggest weeks ever on the Coffs Coast.

That’s when Rally Australia, the national round of the World Rally Championship, will explode into action and attract an estimated 20,000 visitors.

“With less than a year to go until the best rally teams on the planet arrive in the region for the championship, work has already begun to make sure that we can provide an excellent, world-class venue in 2011,” Coffs Harbour Mayor Keith Rhoades said.

“The Coffs Coast has a very long history of successfully hosting Australian rally events and we’re already well known for having some of the best rally stages in the country. But now we’re working towards having the region known as one of the best overall rally venues in the world.”

Planning for the rally has already started and the Confederation of Australian Motor Sport, the Premier’s Department and the Homebush Motor Racing Authority are embarking on extensive community engagement.

Homebush MRA CEO Bryan Hardman will administer changes to the legislation to allow approval of the rally.

“The Act of 2009 allowed for the rally to occur on the Northern Rivers or any other prescribed area,” he said.

“This gives us flexibility but to make it valid and legal and ensure there are no grey areas the legislation will be amended.”

Mr Hardman will also liaise in particular with the local councils involved on the choice of the exact route as well as the location of event infrastructure such as the service park, media centre and rally headquarters.

“With around 20,000 fans expected to come to the Coffs Coast from all over Australia and overseas, the event is going to generate a massive economic boost for the region,” Cr Rhoades said.

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