Motorsport Australia wishes to advise that Canberra’s opening round of the RSEA Safety Motorsport Australia Rally Championship (ARC) has been postponed.
Due to the ongoing issues surrounding COVID-19 and in consultation with the ACT Government, organisers of the Netier National Capital Rally have made the decision to postpone the 21-22 March event until later in the year. The organisers reluctantly made the decision with the health and safety of crews, volunteers and the general public in mind.
Motorsport Australia Director of Motorsport & Commercial Operations Michael Smith said it was disappointing the start of the rally season would be delayed, but logistics and travel requirements had meant the decision had to be made now.
“We were contacted by event organisers who told us they felt it was no longer possible to guarantee that the event could go ahead next weekend if there were further restrictions placed on events and the community in the coming week,” Smith explained.
“Given the logistical challenges involved in having teams across the country travel to Canberra, including those travelling long distances such as those crews from Western Australia, the decision to postpone the event was made with enough time to allow teams to avoid any unnecessary travel.
“All rally fans will be disappointed that the event cannot go ahead, but unfortunately it is a challenging time for events across Australia and around the world.”
The opening round of the ARC was scheduled to take place in Canberra in a week’s time, however a new date will be announced as soon as possible, with a number of potential dates later in the year being discussed. Competitors who entered the opening round will receive a refund on their entry fees.
Motorsport Australia will continue to liaise with all motorsport event organisers and governments across the country regarding future events in all disciplines, with an internal working group meeting regularly to discuss the issues.
“Each motorsport event is very different when it comes to the number of competitors, spectators and the locations, so this decision certainly doesn’t mean that all other motorsport events need to be postponed at the present time,” Smith added.
“Motorsport Australia is closely monitoring the situation and will continue to provide updates on its website and to members, competitors, officials and event organisers as required.”
Motorsport Australia also acknowledges the Federal Government’s announcement today regarding the restriction on public gatherings, but believes at this time many events are in a position to continue, based on the restrictions in place.
Regular updates on the COVID-19 situation will continue to be provided on motorsport.org.au in the coming days.