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RALLY AUSTRALIA is an automobile rally event which was held in and around Perth
Perth
, Western Australia
Western Australia
from 1988 until 2006, when that state's tourism commission severed its collaboration with the event. The rally was part of the Asia-Pacific Rally Championship in 1988 and the World Rally Championship
World Rally Championship
from 1989 to 2006. The event returned in 2009 to the Northern Rivers region of New South Wales
New South Wales
in early September and alternated with Rally New Zealand for 2010 and 2012 before becoming an annual fixture in its own right from 2013. From 2011 the event was relocated to Coffs Harbour
Coffs Harbour
.

The event has also been a round of the Australian Rally Championship although not consistently as the ARC technical regulations has been incompatible with the WRC in some years. Similarly the Western Australian Rally Championship has also been a part of Rally Australia during its Perth
Perth
based history.

During the years when Rally New Zealand replaced Rally Australia
Australia
on the WRC calendar, the rally was run as an Australian Rally Championship round, titled Coffs Coast Rally.

CONTENTS

* 1 History * 2 Controversy

* 3 Winners

* 3.1 Notes * 3.2 Multiple winners

* 4 See also * 5 References * 6 External links

HISTORY

The FIA World Rally Championship
World Rally Championship
first came to Australia
Australia
hosted in the state capital of Perth
Perth
, Western Australia
Western Australia
. Initially a super-special stage was run at Richmond Raceway near Fremantle with the service park at Langley Park on the Swan River . Competitors pushed as hard as they could on the world-famous jumps in the Bannister Forest, the super-special stage Langley Park and later the Gloucester Park Super Special
Special
stage.

It was praised for its unique road surface, consisting of tiny, smooth round stones that had the effect of driving on ball bearings. Rally Australia
Australia
was voted "Rally of the Year" in 1995, 1999 and 2000 by the WRC teams.

The 2006 rally held on 26 to 29 October was the final one staged in Western Australia
Western Australia
. It was cancelled by the holders of the rally contract, the Western Australia
Western Australia
Tourism Commission after the then ruling Australian Labor Party
Australian Labor Party
decided to withdraw funding, despite widespread support for the event to continue in Perth. This move was considered a short sighted and poor one by the Australian Labor Party , as Rally Australia
Australia
was the largest annual international event held in Perth.

After missing a year from the 2007 WRC calendar, Rally Australia
Australia
was to have a new home from 2008, based on the Gold Coast, Queensland
Gold Coast, Queensland
on the east coast of Australia. However without planning approval from the Queensland state government to construct the proposed I-METT facility to headquarter the rally, the event was on hiatus.

Rally Australia's return was announced for September 2009, with the event to be based out of Kingscliff in northern New South Wales
New South Wales
. The event will alternate year to year with the Rally New Zealand for a place on the World Rally Championship. The NSW state government designated the rally a major event, citing the huge impact of the event upon the economy of the region. The location for the event, planned to run there every second year until roughly 2020, was agreed upon between Rally Australia
Australia
directors, local mayors and representatives from Events NSW, a state government tourism body.

CONTROVERSY

The WRC rally in New South Wales
New South Wales
was enabled by a special Act of New South Wales Parliament , the Motor Sports (WRC) Act 2009. This legislation is designed to last for the life of Rally Australia's ten to twenty-year contract with the NSW government. The event was still bound to abide by all environmental, cultural and heritage protection acts and was not exempt for any possible breaches that may or may not occur. The legislation allowed for a fast-tracked approval process after being stalled by local government.

Many residents objected to the legislation and also felt that the event was incompatible with the Northern Rivers' social fabric and reputation as an ecotourism destination. As a result, the 2009 event was marked by significant public protests in the lead-up to and during the event. Two race stages were abandoned due to protest activities where rocks were allegedly laid on the road prior to the scout cars coming through the stage. A race stage marshall claimed protesters had thrown rocks at rally cars, resulting in worldwide media reports and an outcry against protesters. However, after lobbying by public residents' group No Rally Group, who cited concerns about the indiscriminate vilification of residents opposing the rally, police eventually stated that there was no evidence that rocks had been thrown.

In September 2010, as controversy over the event continued in local communities, the Australian motorsport administrative body, the Confederation of Australian Motor Sports (CAMS), which owns Rally Australia, announced that the rally would relocate to Coffs Harbour
Coffs Harbour
, where there is an established rally event, the Coffs Coast Rally.

Rally Australia
Australia
Chairman Alan Evans stated that the event's departure from the Northern Rivers marks the first time a leg of the WRC has ever been relocated due to residents' concerns, despite the fact that there have been many such efforts by residents all over the world in areas where the event has been staged.

The 2011 Rally Australia
Australia
event was run successfully at Coff Harbour under the stewardship of Ben Rainsford as Chairman and Michael Masi as Chief Executive.

WINNERS

Sébastien Ogier in 2015

SEASON DRIVER CO-DRIVER CAR LOCATION EVENT REPORT

2016 Andreas Mikkelsen
Andreas Mikkelsen
Anders Jæger Volkswagen Polo R WRC Coffs Harbour
Coffs Harbour
Report

2015 Sébastien Ogier Julien Ingrassia Volkswagen Polo R WRC Report

2014 Sébastien Ogier Julien Ingrassia Volkswagen Polo R WRC Report

2013 Sébastien Ogier Julien Ingrassia Volkswagen Polo R WRC Report

2012 Event not held

2011 Mikko Hirvonen
Mikko Hirvonen
Jarmo Lehtinen Ford Fiesta RS WRC Coffs Harbour
Coffs Harbour
Report

2010 Event not held

2009 Mikko Hirvonen
Mikko Hirvonen
Jarmo Lehtinen Ford Focus RS WRC 09 Kingscliff Report

2008 – 2007 Event not held

2006 Mikko Hirvonen
Mikko Hirvonen
Jarmo Lehtinen Ford Focus RS WRC 06 Perth
Perth
Report

2005 François Duval
François Duval
Sven Smeets Citroën Xsara WRC Report

2004 Sébastien Loeb Daniel Elena Citroën Xsara WRC Report

2003 Petter Solberg
Petter Solberg
Phil Mills Subaru Impreza WRC
Subaru Impreza WRC
2003 Report

2002 Marcus Grönholm Timo Rautiainen Peugeot 206 WRC
Peugeot 206 WRC
Report

2001 Marcus Grönholm Timo Rautiainen Peugeot 206 WRC
Peugeot 206 WRC
Report

2000 Marcus Grönholm Timo Rautiainen Peugeot 206 WRC
Peugeot 206 WRC
Report

1999 Richard Burns
Richard Burns
Robert Reid Subaru Impreza WRC
Subaru Impreza WRC
99 Report

1998 Tommi Mäkinen Risto Mannisenmäki Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution
V Report

1997 Colin McRae
Colin McRae
Nicky Grist Subaru Impreza WRC
Subaru Impreza WRC
97 Report

1996 Tommi Mäkinen Seppo Harjanne Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution
III Report

1995 Kenneth Eriksson
Kenneth Eriksson
Staffan Parmander Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution
Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution
III Report

1994 Colin McRae
Colin McRae
Derek Ringer Subaru Impreza 555 Report

1993 Juha Kankkunen Nicky Grist Toyota Celica GT-Four ST185 Report

1992 Didier Auriol Bernard Occelli Lancia
Lancia
Delta HF Integrale Report

1991 Juha Kankkunen Juha Piironen Lancia
Lancia
Delta Integrale 16V Report

1990 Juha Kankkunen Juha Piironen Lancia
Lancia
Delta Integrale 16V Report

1989 Juha Kankkunen Juha Piironen Toyota Celica GT-Four ST165 Report

1988 Ingvar Carlsson Per Carlsson Mazda 323
Mazda 323
4WD Report

NOTES

A Due to the World Rally Championship
World Rally Championship
round rotation, the 1994 rally counted only for the 2-litre World Cup .

MULTIPLE WINNERS

WINS DRIVER

4 Juha Kankkunen

3 Marcus Grönholm - Mikko Hirvonen
Mikko Hirvonen

Sebastien Ogier -

2 Tommi Mäkinen - Colin McRae
Colin McRae

WINS MANUFACTURERS

4 Volkswagen
Volkswagen

3 Peugeot
Peugeot

Lancia
Lancia

Mitsubishi
Mitsubishi
. Subaru
Subaru

Ford
Ford

2 Citroën
Citroën
. Toyota
Toyota

SEE ALSO

* Australia
Australia
portal * Motorsport portal

* Motorsport in Australia
Australia
* List of Australian motor racing series

REFERENCES

* ^ A B Evans, David (29 September 2010). "Rally Australia
Australia
moves to new location". autosport.com. Haymarket Publications . Retrieved 2010-09-29. * ^ Rally round planned for Australia
Australia
called off Herald Sun, 25 October 2007 * ^ Queensland world rally event scrapped The Age, 26 October 2007 * ^ WRC to return to Australia
Australia
in 2009 Sydney Morning Herald, 10 September 2008

EXTERNAL LINKS

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