The forest roads of the Coffs Coast will be seen on 7mate in November when it broadcasts live stages of the Kennards Hire Rally Australia.
The forest roads of the Coffs Coast will be seen on 7mate in November when it broadcasts live stages of the Kennards Hire Rally Australia. Trevor Veale

Coffs Coast on TVs around the country free of charge

WHILE more than 40 million television viewers watch the Kennards Hire Rally Australia internationally, the Coffs Coast's major sporting event has found a home on Australian free-to-air TV.

An agreement with the Seven Network was announced yesterday with the national 7mate channel to broadcast one-hour highlights from every round as well as the key plank for local markets, live coverage of the championship finale at Kennards Hire Rally Australia from November 15 to 18.

Rally Australia Chairman Ben Rainsford said the deal was great news for Australian WRC fans, who had not enjoyed regular free-to-air coverage for several years.

"Rally Australia is excited to partner with the Seven Network and 7mate. Seven is a pioneer of motorsport television and will bring many new fans to the WRC," Rainsford said.

Rally Guanajuato Mexico will be the first WRC round shown on 7mate, on Wednesday, March 28 with encore broadcasts scheduled for the next day and Easster Saturday.

Remaining rounds will be scheduled for first runs on Wednesdays after each event.

Come November, at least four and a half hours' weekend Rally Australia coverage is expected to feature three live stages, including the season-ending Power Stage, a high-drama, points-paying shootout that may decide the overall outcome of the event or the season.

WRC programming will be complemented by coverage of the CAMS Australian Rally Championship and BFGoodrich CAMS Australian Off Road Championship, which also are included in the 7mate schedule.

Seven Network Head of Sport Saul Shtein welcomed the new relationship with the WRC.

"Motorsport fans are in for a rollicking good time as they settle in to watch 7mate's coverage of the Rally Championship. It's fast and dangerous, featuring drivers with incredible skills," he said.