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The opening round of the rescheduled Australian Rally Championship is at great risk of being cancelled due to the worsening COVID-19 pandemic. Speaking to RallySport Magazine from Canberra, National Capital Rally director, Adrian Dudok, said that the event's chances of running in September are starting to look slim.
"My money would be on the Nat Cap Rally not running this year, but we're still waiting on some direction from Motorsport Australia," he said.
"Motorsport Australia's position is that it's a national championship, and if half the nation can't attend, that it's not what it says it is, and we totally understand that. "We have our Supplementary Regulations approved and ready for publication, but like everyone, we're still waiting to see what happens in Victoria and NSW (with Coronavirus) and what that looks like for rallying." The Brindabella Sporting Car Club are already reeling from yesterday's postponement of the popular Narooma Forest Rally, which was to have been run on August 1. Should the National Capital Rally be cancelled in September, it is likely that the Narooma event would be rescheduled to a September date. "It was a tough decision to cancel Narooma, but the last thing we want to be doing is bringing COVID into the area after the community has already had to deal with fire and floods in recent times," Dudok added.

The National Capital Rally may be a victim of COVID-19 as the virus worsens in Australia. Photo: Luke Whitten

"We also need to think about the reputation of the sport of rallying. If we were responsible for bringing the virus into the area, the sport would suffer irreparable damage." Motorsport Australia are discussing their commercial responsibilities with sponsors before making a decision on the National Capital Rally, and what implications an event cancellation might have on the ARC. "We're monitoring the situation and hope to be able to announce some details in the coming week," Motorsport Australia media manager, Paul Riordan, said.
"Things are changing from day to day, but we're very confident that some ARC rounds will be held, but clearly we're at the mercy of COVID."
Riordan said that there were no set number of events that need to be run to constitute an Australian Rally Championship, and that anything is worth considering in 2020. "We're continuing to work through things with the various stakeholders, but as I said, we're totally at the mercy of the virus," he added. Victoria has recorded almost 900 new positive COVID-19 cases in the past two days.

Related news:

https://rallysportmag.com/virus-situation-forces-narooma-rally-postponement/ https://rallysportmag.com/windus-takes-stock-after-crash-shortens-season/
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