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Competitors leap at opportunity to honour Possum

MEDIA RELEASE 25/7/2013

FOR IMMEDIATE USE

Competitors leap at opportunity to honour Possum

In the build up to a very special tribute which honours world renowned New Zealand Rally great, Possum Bourne competitors have leapt at the opportunity to register their involvement in the Vantage Aluminium Joinery Possum Bourne Memorial Rally. The rally will feature several tarmac and gravel stages held over the course of one action-packed day allowing spectators in rural South Auckland, Franklin and Waikato to be part of the action which takes place in just over a month’s time, on the 7th of September.

With entries still open the event which starts and finishes in Possum’s home town of Pukekohe, has already attracted plenty of high-profile entries including New Zealand’s own 2011 Production World Rally Champion Hayden Paddon, as well as four-time New Zealand Rally Champion Richard Mason.

Current New Zealand Rally Championship drivers will fight for overall honours beside past champions competing in Possum’s memory – including past three-time New Zealand Rally victor Neil Allport returning to the national championship in his historic Ford Escort RS1600.

While loved and honoured for placing New Zealand on the World Rally stage in iconic Kiwi fashion, Bourne created hugely successful career which netted him seven Australian Rally Championships, three Asia-Pacific Rally Championships and a New Zealand Rally Championship before his untimely death in a road accident in 2003. His friendly and warm personality made him a favourite with fans and the media alike, making Bourne a household name and lifting the profile of rallying in New Zealand.

Run by Pukekohe Car Club as the fifth event in the 2013 Brian Green New Zealand Rally Championship, after leaving Pukekohe the event will take to the infamous gravel roads of Maramarua Forest before turning to the sealed surfaces of Hampton Downs Motorsport Park for two stages. The gravel competitors will then head to Ardmore Quarry Road and for final afternoon stages meet up with tarmac drivers for the ‘Power Stage’ being held at Pukekohe Park Raceway.

Speaking on the excitement of this rally, in particular it’s unique make-up Possum Bourne Memorial Rally Clerk of Course, Stuart Barnett said “the mixed surface format adds a unique spice to the special event, plus with the addition of tarmac stages we’re really looking forward to allowing the public a special look at some amazing cars. This event will truly showcase the best in New Zealand rallying from past and previous eras – all in the name of Possum.

“Dual surface rallies are something that we rarely see here in New Zealand, in fact the last time was to celebrate 40 years of New Zealand rallying 2007, so to honour someone like Possum in this manner will be very humbling for everyone involved.”

For those whose vehicles are limited to competing on tarmac, a restricted field of competitors will be able to contest a special, purpose-planned tarmac-only rally. Those competing on tarmac only will fight it out for quickest stage times on the same sealed stages as the open field of competitors.
Already, spots are filling up fast from a diverse field of willing competitors.

For more information on competing in the rally, those interested are invited to register interest via the Possum Bourne Memorial website – www.pbmrally.co.nz.

ENDS


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