POOLE’S annual motorsport event has been axed for 2014, with the local economy set to miss out on £1.2million.

As reported in the Daily Echo, Rallye Dorset – formerly known as Rallye Sunseeker – was threatened by a decision to take the British Rally Championship (BRC), of which it is part, in-house.

It was confirmed at the weekend that the BRC will be run by International Motor Sports from 2016, with the championship taking a sabbatical in 2015.

Before the relaunch, IMS will decide which events will take up the championship.

Rallye Dorset had been due to take place on October 17-18.

A statement from the Southern Car Club, which runs the event, said: “Unable to confirm the event's future status, with no BRC in 2015 and no clear idea of what may lay beyond, the club's committee has withdrawn from the sponsorship negotiations. This leaves the club with a large potential financial deficit, so postponement is the only option.”

Bruce Grant-Braham, chair of the Poole Tourism Partnership, told the Daily Echo earlier this month that the international event was a “crucial part” of Poole’s events programme, and brings around £1.2 million into the town.