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New Minister in the driver’s seat

For Immediate release, 24 September 2002

New Minister in the driver’s seat

The EnergyWise Rally 2002 has taken on a new direction with the announcement that two parliamentarians will be behind the wheel.

Associate Minister of Energy and Transport Hon Harry Duynhoven will be driving the leg from Palmerston North to Wellington. A self-confessed car enthusiast, Mr Duynhoven is looking forward to leading the event into Wellington. The car Mr Duynhoven will drive is being kept under wraps, but will be announced shortly.

Meanwhile, rally driver and United Future MP Paul Adams has issued a challenge to fellow rally aces Mike Marshall and Grant Aitken by lodging an entry in the event. Driving a 1.5 litre Kia Rio, Adams will be seeking to be amongst the overall front-runners in the event, which is designed to highlight the fuel economy of new cars.

It will be a very different rally to those which he and the other rally drivers are accustomed to. Rather than racing against the clock, they will be racing against the fuel gauge, while having to maintain normal traffic speeds.

Heather Staley, Chief Executive of the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority (EECA), the main sponsor of the Rally, is enthusiastic at the widespread interest the event is attracting. Ms Staley is keen to highlight that the Rally is not just about the cars themselves. “A key aspect of the rally is that it’s not just what’s under the hood, but more importantly what’s behind the wheel. Getting more fuel savings is about driving smarter,” she said.

The event starts in Auckland on 11 November. Travelling via Tauranga, Palmerston North, Wellington, Hastings and Hamilton, the cars will arrive back in Auckland on 14 November.

Image shows Associate Minister of Energy and Transport Hon Harry Duynhoven and EECA CEO Heather Staley in front of Parliament Buildings with an EnergyWise Rally car.

ENDS

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