Wales Rally GB set to rev up Swansea's SA1 Waterfront Swansea City Centre will be the focus of world motorsport attention when Wales Rally GB (December 4-7) sets up its Service Park at the SA1 Waterfront - bringing world champions, live on-stage...
Wales Rally GB set to rev up Swansea's SA1 Waterfront
Swansea City Centre will be the focus of world motorsport attention when Wales Rally GB (December 4-7) sets up its Service Park at the SA1 Waterfront - bringing world champions, live on-stage entertainment, trade stands, giant screen, driver interviews and fireworks to the heart of the city.
Rally cars will visit the Service Park a total of seven times over the four-day event, giving spectators the opportunity to see how teams change gearboxes, wheels and tyres in a frenzy of activity.
Gates open at 8am on Thursday 4 December, when some of motorsport's top sports stars - including five-times World Rally Champion Sebastien Loeb and six-times MotoGP Champion Valentino Rossi (who will be supporting the BBC Children in Need appeal) - prepare for the start of the final round of the FIA World Rally Championship at Shakedown.
There will be a new free park and ride service to Shakedown, which will operate from Langdon Road, off Fabian Way, Swansea. The first bus will leave at 7am to Tircoed Forest Village, with journeys taking on average 30 minutes. The last bus will leave Tircoed at 2pm to return to Langdon Road. There will be no parking facilities at Shakedown.
Over the following three days, all 86 competing cars will return to the SA1 Service Park to be repaired and prepared for the next batch of demanding forestry special stages.
And with so many cars in the event, there will be continuous rally car action for two and a half hours, between the first car arriving in each service and the last car leaving.
Friday night is party night at the SA1 Service Park. Gates open at 4pm on December 5, and in addition to the rally cars there will be live performances on stage by acclaimed Blondie tribute band Blondied and The Fuel Girls, followed by a spectacular fireworks display. Also, in support of BBC Children in Need, there will be a live auction so fans can pick up a unique souvenir or piece of rally memorabilia, with all proceeds going to the charity.
Saturday (6 December) will be another busy day. Gates open at 7am, with rally cars in SA1 for a mid-day service and for the day's final service at 7pm.
The final day of Wales Rally GB - and of the 2008 World Rally season - brings crews to SA1 twice more. Gates open to the public at 6.30am, with a service at 10am and 1pm. At lunchtime the ABBA tribute band, ABBA Revival will be playing an hour-long live set on stage.
A trade area, selling hot food and official Wales Rally GB and team merchandise, will be open on all four days.
Work to transform SA1 into the centre of world motorsport attention begins on November 24, when the individual team areas, link roads, footpaths, lighting towers, live stage, toilets, barriers, trade area and access points begin to take shape. The top works teams will arrive to set up their hospitality units and service areas on December 1, ready for the show to begin on December 4.
"Having the Service Park located at SA1 Waterfront is a great opportunity for rally fans and families to come and see the world's best cars and drivers close up in a safe and child-friendly environment," explained Andrew Coe, chief executive of Wales Rally GB. "The live on stage entertainment and firework display on the Friday night will really add to the excitement and spectacle of having a world class sporting event in the heart of Swansea City Centre."
Entry into the SA1 Service Park is by ticket only, which can be purchased on the gate. Adult tickets cost just 5 GBP for adults and children aged 15 and under go for 1 GBP - as part of the event's Kids for a Quid promotion.
Service Park opening times:
Thursday 4 December 08.00 - 15.00
Friday 5 December 16.00 - 21.30
Saturday 6 December 07.00 - 23.00
Sunday 7 December 06.30 - 15.00