Spectator friendly Shannons Rally Launceston begins on Friday

The best gravel rally drivers from around Australia will converge on Launceston this week, ahead of the Shannons Rally Launceston.

The third round of the RSEA Safety Motorsport Australia Rally Championship, Shannons Rally Launceston will begin with a free ‘Rally Show’ in the heart of the city. Civic Square in Launceston will be filled with rally cars, competitors and plenty of family friendly activities from 5pm – 7pm.

The rally action itself begins on Saturday and continues in to Sunday when cars compete across 13 stages and 194 competitive kilometres in the forests surrounding Launceston.

Various free spectator points are also available, at Security Rd and in the Sideling area. Full spectator details are available here.

Fans are also welcome to attend the Service Park at Inveresk, with the opportunity to see the cars, drivers and teams up close across the weekend.

Photo: Epic Sports Photography / Peter Norton

Motorsport Australia Director of Motorsport Michael Smith said the event promised to deliver a weekend of non-stop action.

“We’re thrilled to see national level gravel rallying return to Launceston for the first time since 2019,” Smith said.

“Fans will have plenty of opportunities to see the drivers and cars both on show and on stage across the weekend.

“This year’s RSEA Safety Motorsport Australia Rally Championship season is proving to be one of the best in years, with a highly competitive battle across the field and in all classes.

“We can’t wait for the event to begin and we look forward to seeing everyone at Civic Square from 5pm on Friday evening.”

The entry list for the event, which doubles as a round of the Dunlop Tasmanian Rally Championship, is now locked in.
2019 Champion Harry Bates will lead the field, with plenty of other leading cars eager to knock the current Championship leader off the top step of the podium.

That includes locals and Glendun Junior ARC Cup and Shamrock Haulage 2WD ARC Cup competitors Aidan Peterson and Mitch Newton, who will again pilot their Daihatsu Charade in Launceston.
A familiar Tasmanian name in Eddie Maguire will also be pushing to show up the mainland competitors, sitting alongside Zak Brakey in their Mitsubishi Evo 9.

Tasmanians Bodie Reading and Mark Young will also be in the national field, as will Ben Newman and experienced co-driver Steve Glenney, Stephen Maguire and co-driver Stuart Benson, as well as David Thomson as the last of the local national runners.

The full Shannons Rally Launceston entry list is available here.

Tasmanians Aidan Peterson and Mitch Newton in action during the Make Smoking History Forest Rally. Photo: Dakar Press Team Australia