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Former Rally Australia clerk of course and Australian Rally Commission chairman, Garry Connelly, has resigned from the board of Rallycorp, the commercial rights holder of the Australian Rally Championship.

RallySport Magazine spoke to Connelly about his resignation, and the reasons behind it.

“My resignation from Rallycorp is part of the succession plan that was approved by the board of CAMS in August last year (2006),” Connelly said. “I had wished to stand down from both ARCom and Rallycorp a year earlier and hand over the Chairmanship of ARCom to my deputy, Steve Ashton, however Steve indicated in 2005 that there was no way his work commitments could permit him to remain on ARCom past 2006, and that he would like to also find a successor for the chairmanship of Rallycorp.
“Therefore, as part of the process, Steve and I indentified Ed Ordynski as someone we thought would be able to capably chair ARCom, and that ultimately there would be others identified who could take on directorships of Rallycorp.
“Then, sadly, in April 2006, John Large passed away and CAMS asked me to become Australia's delegate to the FIA.  This in itself involves a huge time commitment.  I agreed to do so in early May 2006.  Then in June 2006 I was elected to the FIA World Motor Sport Council - requiring an even greater commitment of time.  I still remain on the WRC Commission Promotion Working Group and Vision 2012 Working Group, plus I am Secretary and a Director of the World Rally Organisers Association Ltd.

“So you can see that something had to ‘give’.  I also have a number of businesses in which I am involved and fellow shareholders and directors who expect me to do my part in the conduct and governance of those businesses.”

Connelly explained that he wrote to the CAMS Board in August 2006 advising, among other things, that it was his intention to resign as a director of Rallycorp at the end of 2007.

“I will continue to retain a keen interest in rallying in Australia,” he added.  “It has been my passion since my first event in 1968 and I have a strong belief it will continue to be a significant motor sport discipline in this country, despite the challenges the sport faces in relation to cost of competing, retaining and valuing organisers and honourary officials who do so much to ensure the sport operates, and most importantly, the challenges of sustainability and potentially overbearing OH&S issues.
“In my (almost) four decades of rallying involvement I have enjoyed the amazing spirit of friendliness, good humour and sportsmanship of the vast majority of rallying's participants.  Not always do people agree, but I find very few people who do not genuinely believe in the views they promote. 

“Whilst there are many different approaches to the ways things could be done in rallying, and many passionate proponents of these approaches, I have no doubt that almost everyone involved honestly believes in what they are doing.

“If I had a request for those in the sport, it would be to plead with people who disagree with any decision or proposal to speak or write to those who are responsible for taking the decisions, and to be involved in the administraton of the sport,” Connelly concluded.

It is not yet known who will take over Connelly’s role at Rallycorp.
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