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Pacific Forest Rally

June 13 and 14, 2003 in Merritt, BC, Canada
Round 5 of the Canadian Rally Championship
Presented by Yokohama Tires


VANCOUVER, BC - The Canadian Rally Championship makes its debut in a new location this June as the fifth round of the 2003 series returns to British Columbia for the first time since the early 1980's. The city of Merritt will host the Pacific Forest Rally on June 13th and 14th when rally teams from around Canada and the US arrive here to compete in this exciting motorsports event for production-based cars.

Last year's Canadian Champion and local resident, Patrick Richard of Subaru Rally Team Canada, currently finds himself in a tight race for the 2003 championship in his Subaru WRX. After just two events, Richard is in a three-way tie for second overall. Among the contenders challenging Richard for rally supremacy are a couple of Mitsubishi Lancer Evolutions; one piloted by the veteran and Quebec native Sylvain Erickson, the other by the talented newcomer Andrew Comrie-Picard of Edmonton. The surprise performance of the season surely belongs to Antoine L'Estage in his Hyundai Elantra. L'Estage currently leads the championship after a couple of steady finishes, but has yet to secure his first overall win. However, by the time the rally teams arrive in Merritt five weeks from now, these standings will likely have changed dramatically, as two more rallies are scheduled in Alberta before the Pacific Forest Rally in BC.

Meanwhile, the organizers of the Pacific Forest Rally are working feverishly to deliver a national-caliber event in and around the Merritt area. This year the event has finally joined the national series as part of the Canadian Rally Championship, which is broadcast regularly on TSN and the RDS. Rally officials, volunteers and the city of Merritt have collaborated to produce this extreme motorsports spectacle using the modern facilities and challenging roads available in the Nicola Valley area.

There will be plenty of opportunities to catch the teams in action, both on the mountain roads and right in Merritt. It all begins with a display at the Merritt Arena, followed by the ceremonial start at the Merritt Civic Centre on the evening of Friday, June 13th. The rally action resumes Saturday morning when teams depart from the Railyard Mall in downtown Merritt. Teams will be returning to the mall throughout the day for service stops. Spectators can catch the action up close at one of several designated viewing areas, including the awe-inspiring vantage point at one of the Active Mountain Entertainment special stages.

For more information about this event, check out the website: www.pacificforestrally.com or contact organizer Paul Westwick at (604) 682-3296, or via e-mail: [email protected]

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For more information:
visit http://www.pacificforestrally.com

or contact the organizers:
Paul Westwick at (604) 682-3296 [email protected]
Ken Kwong at (604) 808-0536 [email protected]

Rally Head Quarters will be at the Merritt Civic Centre, 1950 Mamette Ave, Merritt, BC.

For Media Accreditation contact: Ken Kwong, (604) 808-0536 [email protected]
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