In  a move to add further spectacle to the Australian Rally Championship, ARCom (Australian Rally Commission) have approved the running of Classic Rally Cars in a closed to club format prior to the first ARC car in selected ARC events for 2010.

ACRA (Australian Classic Rally Association), put forward a proposal to ARCom recently to ensure that Classic rally cars with a rich Australian Rally heritage could run at the front of the field at ARC events.

Darryn Snooks, President of ACRA, has led the charge of the classics both here and in New Zealand with his classic Stanza team and has supported the category for many years.

“I am thrilled that many will now see Classic rally cars at the head of the field in the ARC. These cars represent the very fabric of over 40 years of continuous competition in the ARC and you will see some great cars from yesteryear put on a fabulous show,” Snooks said.

“We plan also to have static displays as well. There are some cars that are just too valuable to rally, but will be there for spectators to see.”

Recently, IYK-000, a Ford Escort RS1800 previously driven by multiple Australian Rally Champion Greg Carr, arguably the most famous rally car in Australia, returned to the forest for some demonstration runs prior to the Alpine Rally.

Both Ross Dunkerton and Keith Callinan have Group 4 Escorts that will be competing and Ross, a multiple Australian Rally Champion, is guaranteed to put on a great show.

Ross was running in the top five in the Otago Classic Rally in 2009.

The new ACRA initiative is part of the general resurgence in classic rallying all around the world and classic rallying is one of the fastest growing forms of rallying worldwide and locally.

“The classic cars represent the golden age and most exciting period of rallying both here in Australia and overseas. Who will ever forget Ari Vatenen in the Castrol Rally around the streets of Canberra or George Fury in the Alpine Rally?” Snooks added.
“These cars and the drivers who drive them are legends. Spectators will get to see the cars again driven by some former stars and new entrants to the sport.
“There are a number new classic cars being built by prospective competitors including BDA Escorts, Nissan 240RS, Stanzas and even a Renault Alpine A110 more. Support is growing rapidly for the category.”

Ben Rainsford, Chairman of the ARC, said he was thrilled to see the new initiative by ACRA.

“The Australian Rally Championship has a rich heritage and these classic cars will revive fond memories of a time in rallying where legends were made.

“Younger supporters of rallying will also get to see the cars and some of the drivers that have made rallying what it is today. These cars and drivers shaped the modern competition that we now enjoy,”

The recent Alpine Rally proved that classics are spectacular to watch and are fun for competitors to drive. The classic category will run at the head of the field at select ARC events.

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