Wales Rally GB, Britain's round of the World Rally Championship, will visit a far greater proportion of Wales this November, with four days of action planned, it has been announced today.
The event will kick off on Thursday, November 10 in Llandudno, where two stages on the Great Orme Toll road – last used on the Lombard RAC Rally in 1981 – and one at Clocaenog – last used on the Network Q RAC Rally in 1996 – will make up the competitive mileage for the first day. An opening ceremony will take place outside the picturesque castle in Conwy in the early evening.
Friday will begin with an early morning start and the three stages in Dyfi Forest – first used on the 1961 Rally of Great Britain – before heading to Dyfnant Forest, south of Lake Vyrnwy and onto the RWAS showground for midday service. The loop will be repeated in the afternoon.
On Saturday, November 12, the event moves on to the much-loved stages in Hafren, Sweet Lamb and Myherin, before a repeat loop in the afternoon. The day will finish with a special stage in Cardiff Bay.
Sunday will bring the 1,850 kilometre event – and the 13-round in the 2011 WRC – to a close. Six stages in total – including the FIA WRC 'Power Stage' which will be televised live – will be based around Epynt, centering on the Halfway, Crychan and Monument timed stages. Surviving competitors will then head to Cardiff for the ceremonial finish in Cardiff Bay.
Andrew Coe, chief executive of Wales Rally GB's organiser, International Motor Sports Limited, is thrilled with the new route.
“It has always been a firm commitment of Wales Rally GB to innovate and bring new thinking to the British round of the FIA World Rally Championship,” he said. “And, we are doing that this year by visiting a far larger part of Wales, as well as some of the most iconic stages in rallying history.
“For 2011, we have tried hard to break the mould and give the event a fresh, re-invigorated approach. There is an extremely strong relationship between us and the Welsh Assembly Government and, as a team, they were supportive of our desire to take the event to the north of Wales.”
The Royal Welsh Agricultural Society's (RWAS) permanent showground in Builth Wells, Powys meanwhile will be home for the main undercover service area, organisers added.
The RWAS showground will also play host to the pre-event shakedown on Wednesday, November 9.