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– “The stages selected are the best in the world” – Elfyn Evans
– “The start of a new era for Wales Rally GB” – Tom Cave

Two top Welsh rally drivers Elfyn Evans and Tom Cave have given their enthusiastic support to exciting new plans to revitalise Wales Rally GB, the UK’s season-ending round of the FIA World Rally Championship.

Both Evans and Cave attended last Friday’s special media launch at Venue Cymru in Llandudno where more details for a new look rally based in Deeside, North Wales were revealed. In between a ceremonial start in Conwy and jubilant finish in Llandudno, November’s itinerary features 24 competitive classic stages, more than half of which are either totally new or haven’t been included in the World Championship since the Nineties.

“The new rally route in north and mid-Wales looks fantastic,” enthused Evans, 24, who marked his card as one of the sport’s brightest young prospects by winning last year’s WRC Academy. “In my view, the stages selected are the best in the world. Drivers coming to Wales Rally GB from all over the globe in November will be in for a treat this year.

“As a driver, I’m very excited too,” continued the 24-year-old from Dolgellau. “The forest roads in north Wales are very fast and flowing and that will suit my driving style. They’re very challenging for drivers, great viewing for spectators and the event will be a fantastic finale to this year’s World Rally Championship. Wales Rally GB is an event I enjoy the most. I’ve had good results on the rally in the past, and this year I’ll be aiming for victory in the WRC-2 category with the new Ford Fiesta R5.”

At just 21 and already a winner in the MSA British Rally Championship, Cave from Aberdyfi is another of the sport’s outstanding young talents who’s eager to enhance his reputation when the World Rally Championship comes to Wales. “It is an event I love, not only because I am Welsh but also, it has such a rich heritage and it is an honour to be involved,” he said.

Like fellow countryman Evans, Cave is impressed with the radical revisions being made not only aimed at spicing up the competitive action but also at introducing new fans to what’s one of the world’s most spectacular sports. “There are a huge number of changes for this year, including, of course, the move from Cardiff to Deeside. This means that around a third of the UK population is now within driving distance of the rally, which is amazing.

“From a driver’s point of view, it looks like it will be a fantastic finale to the 2013 season. Three stages in darkness on Thursday night; 24 stages in total including some absolute classics and finishing the event with the Great Orme road will be brilliant.”

Cave gave particular credit to several new initiatives being introduced to encourage locals such as him and his co-driver Ieuan Thomas to enter the season ending World Championship event. These include a special discounted entry fee (reduced from £2600 to £1500) for crews with British passports plus MSA competition licences as well as free entries to top drivers from the MSA British Rally Championship.

“The organisers are aiming to help national competitors to do the event with reduced entry fees, so this is great news, as more drivers will be able to compete on what sounds like the start of a new era for Wales Rally GB.”

A full range of tickets for the 2013 Wales Rally GB are available from Friday 7 June with a World Rally Pass giving access to all 24 competitive stages already on sale at a special ‘pre-sale’ discounted price of £90* (rather than £99) on offer until 30 June.

For the latest updates follow Wales Rally GB on Twitter @walesrallygb, join the conversations on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/walesrallygb  or visit the website http://www.walesrallygb.com

* Terms and conditions apply to all ticket prices.

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