Despite rumours that motorsport's governing body was taking a keen - and not altogether positive - interest in the use of speed cameras on roads surrounding the WRC event in Cardiff in recent years, rally organisers have insisted that there is no threat to take the round elsewhere.

Rally GB Limited has told local South Wales newspaper the Western Mail that the FIA was impressed by the way in which the event has been run since moving to Cardiff and that, despite claims that it believed the use of cameras indicated that the roads were unsafe for a world championship event, the governing body would not be looking to strip the region of its flagship sporting occasion.

Early indications are that the number of speeding offences recorded in 2003 by both spectator and competition vehicles was well down on the 2300+ figure clocked last year.

"The FIA has given us an assurance that it is delighted with the quality of the organisation of the event," Rally GB Limited CEO Andrew Coe told the 'paper, "And this confidence is reinforced by early reports from the police and Safety Camera Partnership regarding the use of the public roads by spectators and competitors for this year's event.

"The 2003 Wales Rally GB was immensely successful in every respect. Spectator numbers were increased over previous years, and those who visited Wales experienced the lowest number of reported traffic delays associated with the event.

"We believe that this was achieved through constant communication throughout the year with the teams and spectators about the importance of respecting speed limits and taking care when driving through local villages and towns, as well as from the support and co-operation of the police and public bodies.

"We are looking forward to continuing to develop the opportunities [the rally] brings to Wales as a whole, as well as to the local communities through which it passes. The warm welcome that we have received means that we are in Wales for the long term."

 

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