Motorsport Ireland has announced that John Naylor has agreed to take up the position of event director for the Rally Ireland, which takes place from January 29 to February 1 and kicks off the 2009 World Rally Championship season.

Naylor formally takes up his position on Monday September 29 and will be based in Rally Ireland's office in Sandyford, Dublin.

Alex Sinclair, chief executive of Motorsport Ireland, has welcomed the appointment and believes that the 45-year-old, who has a long background in motorsport, both as a competitor and official, is well qualified to lead the team of organisers.

"This is just the boost that the event needed," added Sinclair, "especially as John has such a close rapport with all of the volunteers who make this event possible."

Rally Ireland is sponsored by Failte Ireland and the Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure and is organised by Motorsport Ireland with the assistance of the Association of Northern Ireland Car Clubs.