Organisers of the 2021 AMH Automotive Group Rally of the Bay have made the difficult decision to postpone the event and are working with relevant authorities and the NSW Rally Panel to secure August 28.
With ongoing restrictions in Sydney and beyond, North Shore Sporting Car Club (NSSCC) is not confident that travel constraints will change sufficiently to allow the event to proceed on the 17th of July.
Event Manager Nigel Bland said the decision was extremely difficult. “Even if the stay-at-home order in Sydney is lifted, there’s still a good chance people will be restricted from travelling” he said. “And whilst many of the competitors are not Sydney based, the entire organising team is.”
“That’s left us in a difficult position. Do we continue with the event and hope that everything gets opened up next weekend, or do we make the decision now to give competitors the opportunity to plan for a new date.”
“There are so many variables at play here that it’s just not worth the risk to continue with the original date.”, Bland said.
The proposed date of the 28th of August was originally slated for a Rallysprint run by Shoalhaven and Kiama Districts Auto Club (SKDAC) and was offered to NSSCC.
“We really appreciate SKDAC giving up their rallysprint date so we could re-schedule our event. In fact we didn’t even have to ask them. They offered it up to us when it looked like the restrictions would impact the event. We really want to thank SKDAC and particularly SKDAC President Peter Ewing for their generosity” Bland concluded.
The event organising team met today and were confident the date change was the right decision based on the evolving health situation.
“The other option was to cancel the event altogether”, said NSSCC President, Brett Middleton.
“But there’s so many businesses in the Eurobodalla Shire that rely on our event. Last year we estimated the rally brought $750,000 worth of economic benefit to the region and it’s important for us to support the local community”, Middleton continued.
“Three of our major partners are local to Batemans Bay including the Batemans Bay Marina Resort, the Village Centre and Bridge Plaza shopping centres and the Eurobodalla Shire. We’ve already invested in a major marketing campaign in the lead up to the event so moving the date is the best outcome for everyone.”
“We understand this now puts some pressure on competitors because there are other events that are now closer to ours, but the Rally of the Bay is such an iconic event and we know our rally teams will expect us to reschedule and go ahead with it”, Middleton said.
“With event scrutineering due to start this weekend, it’s important to make the decision before people start to get prepared. We hope our customers stick with us and that the event goes ahead in August and is a great success”, Middleton concluded.
NSSCC expect to formally announce the new date early next week.