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Intending competitors in this year’s Alpine Rally have until September 14 to register an expression of interest.

The organizers of the November 24 & 25 event have been overwhelmed with potential entrants, 130 crews already registering their interest in participating. Interest in this biennial event which will be based in the East Gippsland region of Victoria at Lakes Entrance has been immense and with a maximum field of 100 entries permitted to start, there are sure to be a few disappointed crews.

However it’s not too late to register an EOI, and the appropriate forms can be downloaded at www.alpinerally.org.au

Interesting entries already received are those of the last event’s winner, Geoff Portman, and 2003 winner Brian Semmens, while Sydney’s Gerry Duvestyn  anticipates entering his Lancia Rallye 037, certainly the only car of its type in Australia.

Planning for the 2-day, 420km competitive rally is in the hands of Andrew Roberts, a local Gippslander who was responsible for the selection of much of the previous Alpine Rally route.

“There is slightly more competitive distance than the last Alpine, but the quality of the roads is excellent. We’ve listened to competitor feedback from the last event and weeded out those roads that were considered too rough, and added some new and very challenging roads into the mix,” Roberts said.

The destructive bushfires and devastating floods that roared through East Gippsland earlier this year have had minimal affect on the route, and competitors can expect a route that will be both testing and challenging.

Event sponsors are coming on board at the moment, supporting what will be one of this year’s top events, which is restricted to 2 wheel drive, normally aspirated vehicles, and will be providing a range of awards spread throughout the rally.

Intending competitors should make their accommodation arrangements now as vacancies are decreasing rapidly. Bookings and enquiries for accommodation can be made by calling 1800 637 060 or by visiting www.lakesandwilderness.com.au

Owen Polanski (owenp@vicnet.net.au) or Andrew Roberts (andykat@bigpond.com) can provide further information on the event or you can download information from  the Alpine Rally website listed above.

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