Coltel Granite City Rally poised to enter a new era

The biggest motorsport event in the North-east of Scotland, the Coltel Granite City Rally, is poised to enter a new era.

With the growing success of the rally, this year's event, — on Saturday, April 14 — has a new rally HQ, new organising team, and a new title sponsor.

Coltel, which has offices in Aberdeen and Edinburgh, is one of the country's leading providers of communication, information technology and safety testing services to the business market in Scotland.

The company's decision to sponsor the Coltel Granite City Rally significantly raises the profile of the North-east event.

"We're delighted to be sponsoring the Coltel Granite City Rally," Neil Collie, of Coltel, said. "The Granite has long been one of the principal sporting events in the North-east.

"This is a new era for the Granite and there are a number of exciting developments planned for the next few years. That's why we're onboard."

The HQ for the Coltel Granite City Rally, the third round of the Scottish Championship, has moved to a fantastic new venue at Thainstone Agricultural Centre, near Inverurie.

The site is large and comprehensive enough to host a round of the Intercontinental Rally Championship or World Rally Championship.

In addition to housing the media centre and rally offices, the Thainstone venue will be the scene of the rally's official start and finish, as well as scrutineering.

Local hotels and B'n'Bs will also benefit from the influx of crews, drivers and co-drivers who will travel to the area from all over Scotland.

This year's event has been masterminded by a new organising team, led by Aberdeen & District Motor Club President, Ian Shiells (correct, Shiells), who has taken over as the Clerk of the Course.

Shiells' team includes Inverness-based Iain Campbell, who masterminded Scotland's round of the Intercontinental Rally Championship for three years, as Deputy Clerk of the Course.

The experienced line-up also includes Andy Jardine as Event Secretary, and last year's winner of the Granite, Aberdeen's Dave Weston as Sponsor Coordinator.

"The team has been working tirelessly for the past few months to ensure the Coltel Granite City Rally is the best Scottish Rally Championship event of the year," Shiells said.

"We're delighted to have a major sponsor onboard in the shape of Coltel, and that has allowed us to concentrate on delivering a highly professional event for the competitors.

"But we've also done everything we can to make sure the spectators are able to get close to the drivers, and watch all the action safely in the stunning stages.

"This is a new start for the Coltel Granite City Rally, and it's a platform we intend to build on for 2013 and beyond."

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