Matthew Selley and Claire Ryan put their Repco Rally car through the gruelling CTEK West stage near Kyogle last year.
Matthew Selley and Claire Ryan put their Repco Rally car through the gruelling CTEK West stage near Kyogle last year. Cathy Adams

Tweed to hold car rally every year

RALLY Australia wants the Repco Rally to run in Kyogle and on the Tweed every year and a restructuring of the World Rally Championship (WRC) could see it happen.

Federation International de la Automobile (FIA), the governing body of international motor sport, is currently conducting a review of the WRC which could see it expanded and allow the Repco Rally to become an annual event.

Rally Australia chairman Alan Evans said he would welcome a chance to expand the rally.

“I can say this, we would certainly put in submissions to hold the event on an annual basis if the opportunity presented itself, but the contract we have entered into states the rally will be held on a biennial basis,” Mr Evans said.

He said the FIA was looking at growing the WRC, but wouldn’t comment on the likelihood of it happening.

“Our present agreement is for every two years, but if the opportunity presented itself to hold the event every year, we would welcome it,” he said.

Rally Australia is also planning a Targa Tasmania-style rally for the Northern Rivers, to run in conjunction with Speed on Tweed this year.

Mr Evans said the economic impact of the Repco rally on the region had sec-ured much of the public support for the event, with some businesses reporting their best day of trading ever.

“The event is well supported by the community and we intend to stick around there for a long time,” he said.

Protest groups which were vocally opposed to a rally on the Northern Rivers will be further antagonised by plans to expand the event.

The No Rally Group and Kyogle’s Seventh Generation were the fiercest critics of the event.

No Rally spokesman Scott Sledge said if the rally came back to the region they would be met with more opposition than before.

“They are less welcome than they were before,” he said.

Seventh Generation spokesman Peter Lanyon refuted claims the event was an economic success.

 



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