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27-07-2011 at 07:00: Aussies to Get Wildcard in WRC

Two Australian drivers will be given a chance to take on some of the world’s best when the stars of the World Rally Championship hit the roads of the New South Wales Coffs Coast for Rally Australia in September.

Organisers of Rally Australia on 8-11 September are inviting applications for Australian Guest Driver, or wildcard, entries in the Production Car World Rally Championship (PWRC) category of the event.

The two successful applicants will be eligible to score World Championship points, depending on their finishing position, and to measure their performances against top international competitors.

As well as being seeded near the front end of the anticipated field of up to 100 cars and likely to be the first Australians to tackle the stages, the wildcards will be allocated space within the PWRC area in the Service Park, a privilege for any up-and-coming local talent.

Rally Australia Clerk of Course Dr Michelle Gatton said wildcard selection would be a rare opportunity for the lucky Australians to showcase their talents without having to leave the country.

“Like athletes in many sports, Australian rally drivers usually have to scrape together big budgets to travel overseas for experience and to get international attention,” Dr Gatton said.

“For some at certain points in their careers, this wildcard program could be a once-in-a-lifetime chance.”

Applicants’ cars must comply with the PWRC technical regulations, which include use of the specified, or “control” tyres and fuel.

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