Rally GB revives spectator stages in push for fan-friendly route

Rally GB's route will feature spectator stages again this year as Britain's World Rally Championship round makes a push to reconnect with its fanbase

Rally GB revives spectator stages in push for fan-friendly route

The 2013 GB itinerary does not allow for a full day of spectator stages, as was once traditional, stately home-style tests will be included in the route for the first time since 1999.

When Rally GB moved to Cardiff in 2000, spectator stages were binned in favour of the superspecials in the docks area and the Millennium Stadium.

Organiser Andrew Coe said the route was being carefully designed to reinvigorate spectator interest.

"We're looking at stately home-style stages which are close to the [English-Welsh] border," said Coe, "and these stages will have huge centres of population - such as Liverpool, Manchester and Birmingham - within an hour to 90 minutes driving time.

"We want to bring people back and give them a day out; we want to show them what they've been missing and those spectator-oriented stages are the perfect way of doing that.

"We can offer ease of access and great viewing potential within them."

Rally GB will start from Conwy Castle on Thursday November 14, with a loop of forest stages in the dark planned that evening.

The asphalt Great Orme headland stage will not be used on Thursday night, with the organisers citing safety concerns as the reason.

The Orme will run competitively on the final day (November 17), possibly as the power stage.

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