Motorsport Australia has announced Coffs Harbour will play host to the final round of the RSEA Safety Motorsport Australia Rally Championship (ARC) and the FIA Asia Pacific Rally Championship (APRC) finale on 26-28 November 2021, thanks to the support of the NSW Government.
The new look ‘Coffs Coast Rally’ will see competitors from across Australia, New Zealand and Asia head to New South Wales for the event, with stages previously used in Rally Australia as part of the FIA World Rally Championship.
The international event will crown both Australia’s best rally crew of 2021 as the sixth round of the ARC, while the APRC competitors will be putting it all on the line to grab the regional FIA title.
Further details about the event will now follow in the coming months, including stages, location of the service park and all-important spectator information.
The New South Wales Government has thrown its support behind the event, with thousands expected to flock to the region to enjoy the fast-paced action from spectator points, or be part of the event as officials, competitors or crew.
Deputy Premier John Barilaro said staging another world class rally in Coffs Harbour is well overdue, after bushfires and COVID forced the cancellation of the event two years in a row.
“The NSW Nationals are building a safer and stronger regional NSW by securing world-class events for country cities, showcasing our incredible regions to the world,” Mr Barilaro said.
“This is an example of what can happen when you have a council who is prepared to work with the government and stakeholders to bring world-class events to regional NSW.”
Motorsport Australia President Andrew Fraser was excited at the prospect of international rallying returning to Coffs Harbour.
“The Coffs Coast has been a big part of the Australian rally scene in recent years and we know this 2021 event will be another fantastic event for the region,” Fraser said.
“There’s no doubt that Coffs people know how to put on a world class rally and we are really excited to hosting this event which will see a great mix of competitors from both Australia and overseas late in 2021.
“Of course we will work closely with the NSW Government to ensure the event follows all ‘COVID Safe’ protocols, including arrival of any international crews and spectators, who will be subject to the entry requirements at the time of the event.”
Member for Coffs Harbour Gurmesh Singh said hosting the Asia Pacific Rally Championships in Coffs Harbour is a massive win for the region as it will boost tourism and lead to positive economic flow-on effects for communities on the Mid-North Coast.
“The NSW Nationals are creating a safer and stronger Coffs Harbour and supporting this event will bring a valuable boost to the local economy,” Mr Singh said.
“Our tourism and hospitality sector has been reeling since the bushfires and COVID struck and
this event will go a long way in terms of restarting our economy.
“The rally will bring domestic and international visitors to the region, showcasing Coffs Harbour to the world, and encouraging returning visitors to secure tourism benefits now and into the future.”
The 2021 Coffs Coast Rally will take place on 26-28 November 2021.
Photos: Wishart Media