Brother International Rally of Whangarei confirms Green as first entrant

Long-time rally competitor and prominent New Zealand businessman Brian Green is the first driver to confirm his entry for this year’s 2012 Brother International Rally of Whangarei.

The highly-regarded rally, which runs from 30 March to 1 April over roads in the Whangarei and Kaipara districts, marks the opening round of the first round of the increasingly competitive FIA Asia Pacific Rally Championship (APRC). The event, with its new naming rights’ sponsor, also features as the opening round of the 2012 New Zealand Rally Championship (NZRC), New Zealand’s premier rally-sport series that carries the name of Green’s company, the Brian Green Property Group.

Last year’s event attracted 76 teams from nine countries and resulted in a hard-fought victory for Australian Chris Atkinson in a Satria Neo S2000 who become the first international driver to win the International Rally of Whangarei.

Green and his Hastings-based co-driver Fleur Pedersen are frequently among the top finishers in the APRC field and the pair planned their Whangarei entry early for what is the first of many events on their 2012 calendar.

“We were having a sort-out to get ourselves organised for the coming few months – especially with the Brother International Rally of Whangarei running a couple of months earlier than usual,” said Green.

“This year we had hoped to do the Chinese rally championship and New Caledonian championship, as we won that last year but unfortunately a couple of their dates clash with other events, including our long distance Silver Fern Rally here in New Zealand. Plus we’re registered to do the New Zealand Rally Championship, although we can’t do all of it because two of the rounds coincide with APRC rounds offshore.”

Green first elected to sponsor the domestic series in 2011, a commitment he made to help promote the sport about which he is very passionate.

“It’s going to be great to get the season underway in Whangarei,” says Green who’s in his 42nd year of competitive rallying. “Although having said that, it’s not an event that’s been kind to us. For some reason Whangarei hasn’t been the best and we’re yet to finish without incident. I remember back in the mid-‘70s with a Ford Escort BDA breaking an axle in the first 1.3 km of the first stage. And every year we either get a puncture or self inflict damage by cutting a corner, hitting something or running into something. What we’d really like to do up there this year is have one rally where we have a clean run – that’s what it really boils down to!”

With his focus on contesting the Asia Pacific Rally Championship for the 11th time, Green will pilot a Neil Allport Motorsports-prepared Mitsubishi for the first three events, starting in Whangarei. Then Green heads Malaysia where he plans to contest Rally Malaysia – round four of the APRC – in a supplied Subaru which he’ll also use to compete in other rounds of the Malaysian championship.

Green’s longevity as a rally driver he puts down to his approach. “I really do my motorsport for relaxation funnily enough. We run a fairly big business here in Palmerston North, the phones are always ringing and there is always something to do, which is good. But rallying you’re spending two and a half days in a car where no-one can get hold of you unless you really want to talk to them. At the end of it you get out of the car physically ruined but mentally you’re totally relaxed, so that’s how it works for me.”

This year’s Whangarei event covers 283.28 km of competitive stages and takes competitors from rally headquarters at Whangarei’s Quayside Town Basin through a series of gravel roads as far south as Brynderwyn and Maungaturoto. The rally also includes the spectator-friendly super special stage at Pohe Island just a few kilometres from Whangarei’s CBD.

News and information about the Brother International Rally of Whangarei is updated on the event website,, and on its Facebook page on a regular basis.


Photos: Euan Cameron, APRCtv, Marcel Stawiczny

For further comment, please contact:

Laurie Brenssell, International Rally of Whangarei organising committee chairman

M: 0274 333 667

For any other queries, please contact:

Kate Gordon-Smith, media liaison, Brother International Rally of Whangarei

M: 021 587 227; E:

2012 FIA Asia Pacific Rally Championship calendar

Round 1 – 30 March to 1 April – International Rally of Whangarei

Round 2 – 28 to 29 April – Rallye de Nouvelle Calédonie

Round 3 – 26 to 27 May – Rally Queensland

Round 4 – 14 to 15 July – Malaysian Rally

Round 5 – 15 to 16 September – Rally Hokkaido

Round 6 – 26 to 28 October – China Rally

2012 New Zealand Rally Championship calendar

Round 1 – 30 March to 1 April – International Rally of Whangarei

Round 2 – 27 to 29 April – Rally Wairarapa

Round 3 – 25 to 27 May – Rally Otago

Round 4 – 21 to 24 June – Rally New Zealand (incorporating Possum Bourne Memorial Rally)

Round 5 – 25 to 26 August – Rally Gisborne

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