Dalbeattie Set To Host 2023 RSAC Scottish Rally

The `Granite Town` of South West Scotland, Dalbeattie will become hosts of the RSAC Scottish Rally on 22 July, in an exciting move for the highly regarded motorsport event.

The esteemed rally, which will run for the 77th time this summer, is one of the longest-running motorsport events in the country, steeped in history and backed with a rich heritage throughout the years. And now, the all-gravel stage rally will make the switch to the historical county of Kirkcudbrightshire for 2023, giving a fresh, bold new look to its offering for fans and competitors.

For well over a decade, the rally has based itself in and around Lockerbie on the East side of the A74(M) and utilising traditional stages such as Twiglees and Castle O’Er. But, with the recent sale of the Lorry Park which housed the event and its busy service area, organisers set about looking to find a suitable venue to re-home the rally.

After extensive work behind the scenes, the rally organising committee have secured an exciting new Rally HQ and Service Area location in Dalbeattie, just 20 minutes west of Dumfries. Thanks to forestry and firewood machinery suppliers and engineers JAS P Wilson, the rally will now be based at their impressive facilities, offering the perfect location to reveal a new route for the 2023 event.

In an exciting new era for the RSAC Scottish Rally, competitors will be able to enjoy a breathtaking array of stages, many of which will be used for the first time at the event. Historic forests such as Dalbeattie, Kinharvie and Ae will form the backbone of the rally, offering returning protagonists and eager newcomers the perfect challenge in South West Scotland this July.

Townsfolk in Dalbeattie will not miss out either, as the rally finish celebrations, champagne spray and awards presentation are all set to be held in the town centre after a hard-fought day in the forests, bringing the rally to the heart of the community.

For the twenty-sixth time, the rally will be supported by Dumfries and Galloway Council. It’s understood to be the longest-running partnership between a rally and a local authority anywhere in Britain, with the Council supporting nearly one-third of all the Scottish Rallies run since the first in 1932. It forms one of the Council’s seven ‘signature events`, which cover everything from Burns Suppers to arts festivals and World Championship Ice Hockey each year.

Once again some of the finest drivers in the UK will tackle the Scottish Rally as the KNC Groundworks Scottish Rally Championship and Northern Historic Rally Championship will utilise the event as a qualifying round and Clerk of the Course Jonathan Lord is delighted to reveal the new look for 2023.

Jonathan Lord, Clerk of the Course said, “We are delighted to begin a new chapter in the 91-year history of the Scottish Rally with our move to Dalbeattie. This will allow us to use some stages which haven’t featured for several years. The move to Dalbeattie wouldn’t have been possible without the enthusiastic support of Iain Wilson of Jas P Wilson, whose premises will provide a first class location for scrutineering, service and Rally HQ. We acknowledge the continued support of Dumfries and Galloway, who are backing the rally for the 26th time, and we are pleased to bring the event to a different part of the region and one which has produced many fine drivers and co-drivers.”
Councillor Ian Blake, the Chair of the Council’s Communities Committee said, “The Scottish Rally is sure to thrive and increase its audience by moving to Dalbeattie, a town that loves motorsports. After the difficult years of the pandemic I’m confident this stellar much loved event will go from strength to strength during the remainder of this decade.”
Councillor Jackie McCamon, Vice-Chair of the Council’s Communities Committee said, “The Scottish Rally is one of the Council’s seven grant-supported Signature Events. This means it exemplifies best practice in the events sector and provides great entertainment and a substantial economic boost for Dumfries and Galloway. The Council will continue to invest in our Events Strategy to take forward community and economic regeneration across our beautiful region.”
Former winners of the event include World Rally Championship legends such Colin McRae, Ari Vatanen, Hannu Mikkola and Stig Blomqvist although more recently, it has been local ace David Bogie from Dumfries who has written his name in the history books, winning the event a record-breaking seven times over the years.

More information on the event will be released over the coming months.

Keep up to date via social media:
www.facebook.com/scottishrally and www.twitter.com/scottishrally
and the event website www.scottishrally.co.uk