Rally to rev up Coast economy
  • Tuesday 16 June 2015

Motorsport fans aren’t the only ones revving up for this weekend’s International Rally of Queensland at Caloundra. It’s also set to provide a turbo boost for the Sunshine Coast economy.

Tourism, Sport and Major Events Portfolio Councillor Jason O’Pray said the three-day event delivered millions of dollars in economic benefit to local businesses along with priceless international exposure for the region.

“Sunshine Coast Council is a major support sponsor of the International Rally of Queensland which has been staged on the Coast since 1997. Surveys conducted last year revealed an estimated direct economic benefit of $3.5million,” Cr O'Pray said. “This event is shown on television in 118 countries and also enjoys dedicated coverage nationally on the Ten Network and its regional affiliate stations. Every show highlights postcard footage of the Sunshine Coast, hinterland and Mary Valley – so the positive impacts for our region are enormous.” Division 2 Councillor Tim Dwyer said Caloundra was honoured to be the host venue for Queensland’s only international motorsport event. “This rally also ties in with the Asia Pacific Rally Championship and the Australian Rally Championship so there’ll be 55 cars including drivers and co-drivers representing eight different countries,” Cr Dwyer said. “There’ll also be an entourage of up to 2000 crew members, supporters, family members, organising staff, volunteer officials and international media here for up to a week. “The Oaks Oasis Resort will accommodate participants and many other businesses of all types in and around Caloundra will also benefit greatly from an event of this magnitude brings to town.” Sunco Hyundai Sales Manager Jai Urquhart said the Caloundra-based car dealership would leverage the event to bring attention to its first birthday celebrations. “Our service department will also be used for rally car technical tune ups on Thursday afternoon and the public is invited to come along to this and watch the rally teams work on their cars,” he said. “It’s all about publicity. I need people to know where we are and to be able to host something like this gets their attention. We’ve spent a lot of money to promote our birthday and the rally. We hope we can have the rally back every year.” Caloundra Chamber of Commerce Tourism and Events Chairman Bill Darby said the event and the size and scale of its production had been the talk of the town for weeks. “The Caloundra Chamber of Commerce is really pleased to be one of the event sponsors; we recognise the value it brings to the area and the very real economic benefits for business and accommodation providers,” Mr Darby said. “The rally has a huge regional following and thousands of spectators are expected to travel to Caloundra to join the fun of the official ceremonial start in Bulcock Street on Friday. “With an incredibly high calibre international event like this the benefits are enormous. As well as the immediate benefits for local businesses of the increased visitation to the area, Caloundra as a destination has the potential to be noticed by an international audience via the international television coverage. “It all helps to give Caloundra its moment in the sun with potential international holidaymakers.” Local businesses can capitalise on major events that are held in the region through the events+ program. An initiative of Sunshine Coast Council and the Sunshine Coast Events Board, events+ aims to provide local businesses with the tools to leverage major and regional events. To find out more about joining the events+ campaign, contact dtb Advertising on 5458 5600 or email eventsplus@dtb.com.au