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The location of the 2008 Rally Australia should be known by the end of June, according to Brisbane’s Courier Mail newspaper.

While it is already known that the event will be held in south east Queensland, any further details of the event have been a well kept secret since the contract to run the event for the next 15 years was awarded last year.

Rally Australia ran out of Perth in Western Australia for the final time last November, and Australia does not have a round of the World Rally Championship in 2007, however Queenslanders will see WRC action for the first time in 2008.

As has been mooted in the past, many suggest that some of the forestry stages will be held in northern New South Wales, while the Super Special Stage was expected to have been held at a new $650 million motorpsort precinct proposed to be built at Norwell, between Brisbane and the Gold Coast.

But those behind the $650 million Norwell development, i-METT (Integrated Motorsport Education Tourism and Technology) are still awaiting the outcome of a state government land planning review before developing the multi-use precinct, the Courier Mail said.

i-METT says that it has contingency plans in place and the super-special is more likely to be in an area away from the proposed Norwell site in its first year.

"Next year will always be an interim event in terms of operation," i-METT's Ron Brown told the Courier Mail’s Gordon Lomas.

"If we do it on site (Norwell) it will use a mix of permanent and temporary infrastructure.

"If we run it somewhere else - depending on where we run it - it could be permanent, or a mix of permanent, or temporary."

According to Brown, there are a number of options being considered.

"What we're trying to address is the long-term position and the concern of the government in terms of access to state forests and national parks, where they have community concerns about running all sorts of things and not just motorsport," Brown said.

"We've got a 15-year contract for Rally Australia so what we're looking at is that we can afford to take steps now that will enable us to enjoy the benefits of that for the long term.”


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