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This weekend’s Rally of the Bay is shaping up to be one of the most competitive in recent years, with 85 drivers set to tackle the seven stage, 140km rally. The opening round of the NSW Rally Championship, the entry list is one of the strongest we have seen, with the majority of the top ARC competitors making the trip to ‘The Bay’ for the first event of the season. The field is headed by the two-car Toyota Gazoo Racing Australia team of Harry and Lewis Bates, last year’s Rally of the Bay winner, Richie Dalton (Ford Fiesta Proto), and 2017 Australian Rally Champion Nathan Quinn in a Mitsubishi Lancer Evo X. Other notable entries include 2019 Victorian Rally Champion Arron Windus in his Subaru, Luke Anear in a Ford Fiesta R5, and the exciting Group B Audi Quattro replica of Mal Keough. The battle for the NSW Rally Championship will be joined by the Mitsubishi Lancers of Tom Clarke, Mick Patton, Clayton Hoy and Chris Higgs. JJ Hatton will be another front runner in his Hyundai i20, as will Victorian Darren Windus in his rebuilt ex-Mick Harding Subaru WRX.

Luke Anear will drive his Ford Fiesta R5 at the Rally of the Bay. Photo: Wishart Media

The top seeded two-wheel drive car is the Citroen DS3 of Tony Sullens, who usually upsets many in much quicker four-wheel drive cars. Batemans Bay will also be a great chance for the future of the sport to showcase their talents, with multiple junior drivers set to compete. Sixteen year old Taylor Gill will make his rallying debut in his Subaru Impreza WRX, while 17-year old Riley Walters will also campaign a Subaru. Popular Victorian youngster, Troy Dowel, has put aside health issues and will drive a Hyundai i20 G4 in just his third rally. The rally also includes an event for drivers not using pace notes, who will use only the event-supplied road book. While spectators to the event are prohibited, the Rally of the Bay gets underway this Saturday morning. Rally NSW has put in place a series of online systems to allow rally fans to follow the popular event. The online systems include full RallySafe tracking, up to date results using the Chrissport system, and videos from OHM Productions posted on Facebook and YouTube. Follow the Rally of the Bay action at: Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/rallyofthebay/ RallySafe tracking: http://app.rallysafe.com.au/Event/PublicView/3024 Chrissport results: https://www.chrissport.kiwi/events/?db=bayrally2020
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