Sponsorship of international rally to attract tourism dollars
  • Thursday 30 July 2009

The Rally Queensland - Asia Pacific Rally Championships could make the Coast its home for the next three years after the Sunshine Coast Council referred a three year sponsorship proposal for the event to next week’s Ordinary meeting of council.

Council’s Organisation Performance Committee this week discussed the proposal to sponsor the event, one of only three Australian events accredited by the Federation of International Automobile Sport (FIA), for a three year period from 2010 to 2012.

Economic Development and Entrepreneurship Portfolio holder, Councillor Lew Brennan, welcomed the proposed $55,000 per year sponsorship proposal saying that the small spend had the potential to result in significant benefits for the local economy.

“The Asia Pacific Rally Championship (APRC) is an annual FIA regional rally championship which encompasses events in Japan, China, New Caledonia, Malaysia, Indonesia and New Zealand,” Cr Brennan said.

“It is only one of three Australian events accredited by the FIA, the sport’s controlling body, the other two being the Formula One Grand Prix in Melbourne and the forthcoming round of the World Rally Championship in northern NSW in September 2009.

“So not surprisingly, the national and international focus on the event has the potential to inject millions of dollars into our local economy.

“In fact the past experience of the organisers, the Brisbane Sporting Car Club, has indicated that the total expenditure by teams, officials and spectators from outside the region can inject more than $2.2 million into the economy.

“And our support of this event over the longer term has the potential to continue generating such returns particularly if our commitment enables the staging of the rally becomes a permanent fixture on the Sunshine Coast’s sporting calendar.”

The Sunshine Coast has already played host to ceremonial starts, media events and competitive stages of the Rally Queensland event as a past sponsor.

Organisation Performance Committee member, Cr Tim Dwyer, said the region has had a taste of the Rally Queensland event with the former Maroochy and Caloundra councils hosting and providing sponsorship.

“Sunshine Coast Council sponsored the larger, international Rally Queensland – Asia Pacific Rally Championships in 2009 and we recognise that the event has huge potential both for the sport and for this region.

“The Brisbane Sporting Car Club already has in place a Safe Driving Program which is delivers through schools.

“If the sponsorship agreement is approved by council, we will also be working with the Brisbane Sporting Car Club to develop and expand that program here on the Coast and conjunction with the Rally.”

The three year sponsorship proposal will now be considered by the full council at it s Ordinary Meeting to be held on Thursday 6 August 2009, at the council’s Caloundra office.