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Rally New Zealand chairman, Peter Johnston, says the perfect scenario would be for the Kiwi and Australian rallies to run back-to-back in 2021. At this stage only Rally Australia has a spot on the 2021 WRC calendar, but Rally New Zealand would desperately like one too, having had to cancel their rally this year due to COVID-19. "That would be the perfect scenario," Johnston told RallySport Magazine.
"We're gutted to lose this year's event, but we're just facing reality – similar to the situation Australia found itself in last year with the bushfires.
"Of course we'd love to be back next year, but that's out of our hands." Johnston said that Rally New Zealand had taken a financial hit with the cancellation of the rally, with the rally having spent several hundred thousand dollars to build the Power Stage that was revealed recently.
"I'm sad and disappointed for my team, but at the end of the day, people's lives come first," he added.
Rally New Zealand will run a test event in November using new stages that were to have been run in September's WRC round. The 2021 WRC calendar has not yet been finalised, leaving some slim hope that New Zealand could be included next year. Meanwhile, Rally Australia officials are also disappointment that New Zealand missed their chance this year. "The whole Rally Australia team is feeling for them. They earned their chance this year, and it is disappointing that they haven't been able to run the event, through no fault of their own," a Rally Australia insider said. "We went through a similar situation last year, so we know much this hurts – both financially and from an organisational point of view."

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