New look edition in 2009
The 44th edition of the Belgium Ypres Rally in June this year was a real success. One week later, the organisers reconvened already with the objective of doing even better in 2009. They have worked hard and some interesting changes are in the pipeline for next year's event.
President André Bostyn explains: "The IRC is clearly gaining in popularity and as one of the first events to participate to the series, we want to ensure we grow too. The success of the IRC is a clear motivator for our team to let the Belgium Ypres Rally evolve too. We have first of all pulled in some new people to bring a breath of fresh air to the organisation. This collaboration is bringing plenty of new ideas and the future looks fascinating! Alain Penasse, who works with our commercial partner On-Event, will become the new Rally Manager. His experience and know-how should help the growth of our event. We plan to make some significant changes for 2009 to make the rally more attractive to the public!"
The first big change for the spectators will be the new spectator zones that will be added and which should be more conveniently located. On the market place of Ypres, a real Rally Village will be build that will welcome the public with open arms. The stages have also been adapted. Some traditionally specatular stretches such as the Passendale-field and the road down the Monteberg (on the Kemmelberg stage) are back on the programme. De stages will be better signposted and we are even considering a stage just at the other side of the French border!
The drivers are also looking forward to a great event in 2009. We have for instance increased the area on the Ypres market place to allow more teams to set up their service in full view of the public. The stages will become even more technical and fast in order to ensure the Ypres Rally remains a top challenge for the drivers.
The media will not be forgotten either. The interest of the press has increased significantly and we will have new parking areas at the press centre. Also, after a first series of tests during the 2008 rally, we will continue to improve the flow of information from the stages.
The details on all the changes will be published on the revamped website that will go live early 2009. The address will still be www.ypresrally.com. A new communication system will be put in place to ensure the media is kept up to date of the latest developments.
Alain Penasse is really confident: "I am really looking forward to this challenge. We have a motivated team to keep developing the success of the Belgium Ypres Rally. The growing success of the IRC has attracted more manufacturers and sponsors to the Belgium Ypres Rally. If we combine this with our changes, I am confident the 2009 event will be one of the best! We hope everyone will have put the weekend of 19 - 21 June 2009 in their agenda as it will be an event you will not want to miss!"