Organisers of Kennards Hire Rally Australia (14 - 17 November) still hope to go ahead with the closing round of the FIA World Rally Championship in Coffs Harbour this week.
The rally is consulting with emergency services, authorities and the local community about bush fires that have hit the region, but officials hope to stage the WRC season finale on a significantly shortened course.
“Rally Australia’s thoughts are with the New South Wales community, especially the people who have lost loved ones, livelihoods and homes as a result of the fires in northern NSW,” a spokesman said.
“Public safety is our uppermost consideration in planning for Rally Australia this week. We will provide further information about any revised plans as it becomes available.”
Clerk of the course Wayne Kenny today (Sunday) issued a bulletin to competitors advising that the recce for the rally will now take place from 08.00 to 17.00 on Wednesday. The two-day recce was originally due to start on Tuesday.
The event last night advised entrants in the national competitions – the CAMS Australian Rally Championship final round, the Rally Australia Cup and the Rally Australia Two-day event – that their events would not proceed.
At this stage entrants for these competitions have been invited to participate in ‘demonstration’ runs at the Coffs Harbour jetty-based super special stage and Raleigh special stage.
Those who withdraw have been encouraged to donate their entry-fee refund to the Rural Fire Service.
Wrc.com would like to extend its sympathies to all those who have been touched by the terrible events currently unfolding in the region.