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Letterkenny Accommodation - World Rally Championship 2009

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World Rally Championship 29 January- 1 February 2009

The wonderful success of Rally Ireland in the North West region 2 years ago has prompted the FIA - the sport's world governing body -  to hand the honour of opening the 2009 rally to Ireland. And the entire region is ready to seize the enormous potential of an event which will provide a substantial financial boost and afford global television coverage for the North West.

Rally Ireland officially launches with a ceremonial start in Enniskillen, Co Fermanagh on January 29th and will then relocate to its HQ at the Clarion Hotel, Sligo, and the massive service park at Sligo IT. A total of 18 stages will be held in Sligo, Donegal, Roscommon, Cavan, Leitrim,  Fermanagh and Tyrone over the course of the week-end, with the finishing stage taking place in Donegal Town on February 1st 2009.

It is estimated that over a quarter of a million visitors will converge on Sligo, Donegal and other counties throughout the region, generating an economic benefit in the region of 50 million euro. Live coverage and edited highlights of the rally will be broadcast in nearly 200 countries across the Globe, attracting over 60 million viewers.

The entire event should  help to establish the North West as the rally capital of Ireland, according to Paschal Mooney, Chairman of Failte Ireland North West.Speaking at the national launch in Sligo Mr. Mooney promised that visitors to the region would have the time of their lives as communities throughout the North West put on a traditional Irish welcome. An added dimension to the rally was that it was a cross-border event and was a shining example of what could be achieved by co-operation between communities and various agencies in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, Mr. Mooney added.

The Route
Rally Ireland has announced details of the route for next January’s World Rally Championship opening round. The launch of the 2009 World Championship will take place in Belfast on Saturday January 24th. This global live TV event, sponsored by Failte Ireland and DCAL, will feature all the top drivers from Ford, Citroen, Subaru and Suzuki competing with international celebrities at Stormont Castle near Belfast.

Shakedown, where the teams test their cars, will be held near Sligo on Thursday January 29th followed by the official start at Fermanagh Town Hall at 7.30 pm that evening. With a total of 18 special stages and a route covering 1407 km, the event will visit counties Sligo, Donegal Leitrim, Roscommon, Cavan, Tyrone and Fermanagh. The Service Park will again be based at the 52 acre site of the Institute of Technology, Sligo which the teams will visit twice daily for repairs and service on Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

The following areas will feature on the event:
• Cavan: A new stage runs twice on Friday that will offer good spectating near the village of Glangevlin.
• Roscommon: A special stage in Arigna coupled with a new passage control in Boyle on Friday. This visit by the cars to the town will be supported by a festival organised by the local community and Roscommon County Council.
• Leitrim: Will again feature the popular stages of Glenboy and Aughnasheelan with the Lough Gill stage starting in the county and most of the Arigna stage also being run in Leitrim.
• Tyrone/Omagh District: Sloughan Glen and Ballinmallard will run on Saturday and will be run twice.• Tyrone/Dungannon District: Murley and Fardross run on Friday, for the first time in the dark, providing a unique spectacle for both the drivers and fans
• Fermanagh: Tempo and part of the Ballinmallard stage run on Saturday, in addition to the ceremonial start on Thursday.
• Donegal: On Sunday morning the popular Donegal Bay stage will be run in the opposite direction to the 2007 event with a new street stage in Donegal town starting at lunch time on Sunday February 1. This stage will be broadcast live on TV around the world
• Sligo: Rally HQ, Service Park, Shakedown stage and Official Finish

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Related Links
Topaz Donegal International Rally



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