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Fast, open, shire road stages are the tip for next year’s relocated Rally Australia which will be based on the Queensland/NSW border around Kyogle.

And if the rumours about the route are to be believed, then the rally could lay claim to being the fastest World Rally Championship event on the calendar.

Early indications are that the rally will be even faster than the famous 1000 Lakes Rally, which is noted for its high top-end speeds and huge jumps. Rolling countryside bereft of trees and wide, sweeping shire roads will face competitors if the event gets the nod from the Kyogle Shire, who are reported to be enthusiastic about the possibility of a major international event in their region.

RallySport Magazine understands that difficulty in accessing suitable roads in south east Queensland will mean that more than half the event’s stages will be run around Kyogle in northern NSW.

That, and the fact that the option of a satellite service area away from the rally’s base at the proposed iMett facility at Norwell is a distinct possibility, would give the event more scope in accessing more suitable stages.

Although no official announcement has been made about the exact location of the rally, last held in Western Australia in 2006, it is known that top-level discussions are being held with local regional shires and the Queensland government in an effort to bed the event down so that it can be run in 2008.

With proposed changes to the makeup of the World Rally Championship and the possibility that the championship will become part of a bi-annual rotational calendar, Rally Australia organizers will be keen to ensure that next year’s event ticks all the boxes.

Kyogle is situated approximately an hour’s drive south west of Murwillumbah between Lismore and Tweed Heads, and within easy driving distance of major holiday areas such as Coolangatta and the Gold Coast where there is a huge range of accommodation available for competing crews and their teams.

It is also in an intensely populated area on the Queensland/NSW hinterland, a factor that should ensure record spectator numbers.

RallySport Magazine also understands that a major hotel at Sanctuary Cove has been booked out for the rally and will serve as rally headquarters for the duration of the event.

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