Glasgow start for Monte Carlo rally drivers

image captionGlasgow served as a starting point for the rally from 1949 to 1973

Glasgow has won the right to act as one of the official starting points for the Monte Carlo rally, to mark its centenary year.

The decision re-establishes the city as one of several starting points around Europe for the world famous race, which first began in 1911.

Glasgow had served as a starting venue for racers from 1949 until 1973.

Other cities that will feature in the event, due to start on 27 January, will be Marrakech and Warsaw.

The rally was created by Prince Albert 1 of Monaco and initially featured 23 cars starting from six different European cities.

Only 16 completed it in 1911, with Henri Rougier winning in a Turcat-Mery.

Competitors who take part in next year's race will be able to opt to begin their journey in either of the three named cities, which are all roughly equidistant to the finishing line in Monte Carlo.

However, no matter which point they start from, competitors will have to observe local traffic laws.

Glasgow's old RSCA building at Blythswood Square became a favourite starting point for drivers in the 1950s and 1960s.

Onlookers will be able to see 100 classic cars gathering outside the city's Blythswood Square Hotel, which is the former headquarters of the Royal Scottish Automobile Club.

Douglas Anderson, the man behind the bid, said: "To bring the glamour of the Monte back to Glasgow has been a long-held dream.

"It is part of the city's history and heritage and we look forward to welcoming spectators, competitors, media and visitors for the centenary."

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