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Competitors in Australia’s domestic rally championships will be able to test themselves against the world’s best drivers at Repco Rally Australia in a special National Division at the 3-6 September event.

Up to 15 crews in cars complying with Production Rally Car (PRC) technical regulations of the Confederation of Australian Motor Sport (CAMS) will be invited to enter the National Division.

Although their results will not earn championship points or be included in the general classification for the FIA World Rally Championship event, National Division crews will be able to experience the same roads under the same conditions as visiting internationals such as World Champions Sebastien Loeb, Petter Solberg and Ford’s young Finnish aces Mikko Hirvonen and Jari-Matti Latvala.

The National Division is the result of event organisers obtaining permission for the early introduction of relevant 2010 WRC regulations, which were approved last month by the world motorsport governing body, the FIA.

“This is a wonderful opportunity for crews with cars that comply with the Australian PRC technical regulations to experience the challenges and conditions of a top-level international event,” Rally Australia Clerk of Course Dr Michelle Gatton said.

“We have many talented drivers and co-drivers in Australia and the National Division will allow more of them to participate. This is a significant step forward to ensuring as many Australian crews as possible are able to take their rightful place in their country’s own World Championship rally.”

Eligible National division cars must be based on cars currently admitted to the WRC, such as the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution and Subaru Impreza most often used under PRC rules in the Australian Rally Championship and State rally championships.

Crews in the National Division will be required to use the same “control” tyres as the rest of the field of up to 60 cars, as well as FIA safety equipment and clothing.

Applications for entry in the National Division close on 14 July with Rally Australia.

The field for Repco Rally Australia is expected to include 12 WRC cars, 12 contesting the Production World Rally Championship, plus overseas and Australian privateers in FIA-homologated vehicles. Entries for these vehicles close on 5 August.

Supplementary Regulations for Repco Rally Australia are now available on the official website, rallyaustralia.com
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