Border Ranges Rally 2016

The Brakes Direct Border Ranges Rally on Saturday the 27th August is Round 4 of the MRF Tyres Queensland Rally Championship but it might just be the Classics that steal the show at this all shire road event.

Set to run at the front of the field in their own category the Zupp Property Group Classic Rally Challenge will have some top line names competing. Heading the list is New Zealand’s multiple Otago Winner Derek Ayson in a MK II Escort. Derek last ran the event as Zero in a BMW supplied by Ed Mulligan. He loved the event so much he was determined to come back, and compete. Jack Monkhouse will be back this time in a bellowing V8 Manta. Both cars will be supplied by Ed Mulligan of 4WD World.

Rallytorque have put together the Border Ranges Escort Challenge especially for Ford Escorts, and there is certainly good interest being shown. Tom Dermody and Keith Fackrell will be in RS 1800s, Matt Linning in another MK II, and Rob Clark will have his stunning MK1 out for a run. These crews will run with the Classics at the front of the field.

Of course there are all the Classes of the MRF Tyres Queensland Rally Championship with the all-wheel drive rockets leading the way. Rob Bishop in his EVO 6 is an outright contender but there are a few NSW drivers led by Peter Roberts, also in an EVO 6, who will be wanting to take home the trophy for the Queensland V New South Wales Challenge.

Forza (specials brake suppliers) also have prizes on offer for cars fitted with their great product. And of course there is a category for those who just want to come and do some skids on some of the best rally roads in the Country.

Friday is set aside for reconnaissance and a Media Stage. The event proper gets under way in the centre of Kyogle with the first car flagged away at 9.45am. There are nine ex WRC shire road stages being contested with crews passing through the famous Hillyard’s Spectator Point three times. The third will be a night stage. To complete proceedings crews will tackle two runs of the Super Special at the Kyogle Showground.

Supplementary regulations are out for competitors. Refer to www.borderrangesrally.com.au for all the required documentation. But if you are not competing and want your own ‘personal spectator point’ then contact John Truskinger the event’s Officials Co-ordinator jptruskinger@gmail.com 0407 656 044

David Hack Classic Meet

Rotary Club of North Toowoomba has once again pulled off a spectacular event in the annual David Hack Classic. Hosted at the Aerotec Hangar and featuring something for everyone, this year’s event saw around 3,500 people attend and enjoy the various displays. The weather looked like it would once again put a dampener on people’s spirits; but by mid-morning the fog and rain had lifted, providing an enjoyable day.

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The event, focused on raising funds for the Leukemia Foundation of QLD and Toowoomba Branch and Blue Care, showcased car clubs from across South East Queensland; a static display of historical military vehicles and a Kiowa helicopter from the Oakey military museum; and Aerotec’s collection of Warbirds, including the five T-28 Trojans, a T-6 Harvard, an Australian-designed Winjeel and a Tiger Moth. Adding to the excitement was visiting pilot Steve Gale with his SIAI Marchetti Jet on site offering a joy-flight over Toowoomba for the silent action prize winner; and Frank Gafferio with his flaming Bandag Bullet.

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The David Hack Classic also featured a celebration of 100 years of BMW. The Rotary Club of North Toowoomba provided a cake for the monumental milestone in front of a line of classic and modern BMW’s on public display, including a special feature of a new BMW i8. Alongside them, car clubs from across SE QLD, including the Mini Owners Club of QLD, The Darling Downs Veteran and Vintage Motor Club, and the MG Car Club of QLD turned out to show off their pride and joy for the crowds.

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In addition to the classic car displays, Aerotec Toowoomba provided an impressive display of warplanes from across the ages. Planes graced the field for people to get up close and personal with a piece of history, and pilots and ground crews alike were happy to share stories and the history of the aircraft. Once the rain cleared, the crowd were treated to a formation flight of three T-28 Trojans displaying some impressively close-quarters flying. The North-American Trojans, each a different model, were once trainer aircraft, before being re-tasked as counter insurgency aircraft during the Vietnam War. Retired Flight Lieutenant Steve Gale took his SIAI Marchetti Trainer Jet up twice during the day, showing off the aircraft’s top speed of 414knots, or 740km/hr and impressing crowds with some impressive high-speed aerobatics. Finishing up the aircraft display of the day was a formation flight of Aerotec’s Yak54 and Australia’s Winjeel, an aircraft designed and built in Melbourne, and only ever used in Australian combat. Rounding up the wartime display was a collection of vehicles and a Kiowa attack helicopter from the Australian Army Flying Museum at Oakey.

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The Lockyer Valley Rotary Club had a presence on the day, selling tickets to raise funds for struggling farmers. All funds raised from ticket sales into the “Fergie” Ferguson Tractor raffle go straight to farmers in need, providing vital support for those struggling through severe circumstances. To order tickets into the raffle, call 0476923960.

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The Rotary Club reports that the fundraising at David Hack raised approximately $9000 for each Blue Care and the Leukaemia Foundation of QLD and Toowoomba Branch. In addition to the David Hack fundraising, Elders Insurance are offering a donation of up to $50 to either Blue Care or the Leukaemia foundation of Queensland with every new signup or CTP insurance switch. At David Hack, this fundraiser managed to raise nearly $6000 for both charities. The fundraiser is ongoing, and details can be found via the David Hack facebook page.

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When asked about the day, the Chairman of the Rotary Club of North Toowoomba said “It was a great day. The weather looked threatening, but by 10:30 the planes were up in the sky and the sun was out. The exhibitors and the public were down a bit, with around 3,500 people showing up. For our 19th year next year we aim to find new drawcards in both aeroplanes and a vehicle. We are already thinking about what we can do to make out 20th year in 2018 a super big day!”

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Australian Light Aircraft Championships

The Darling Downs Aero Club in Toowoomba hosted the Australian Light Aircraft Championships last week; with pilots and planes flying in from across the country to participate in a series of challenging competitions designed to test pilot skills. The event, held annually and organised by the Royal Federation of Aero Clubs, gave amateur pilots a chance to test their skills as they strive to take out the title in a variety of championship events.

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This year, pilots and planes flew in from Tasmania, Western Australia, and Newcastle, and competed in streamer cutting, formation team flying, forced landings, and spot landings. The aerobatics events were cancelled due to a lack of entrants. Severe winds on Thursday and Friday made for extremely difficult flying, and provided a challenge for pilots to overcome, particularly in the spot and forced landing competitions. The pilots stepped up to the challenge in spectacular fashion, taking on the wind and each other in an attempt to lay claim to one of the titles on offer.

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The spot landing event required pilots to land their plane evenly on a 10 metre strip of runway, scoring 50 points if they hit the mark, and losing 10 points per 10 metres outside of that mark. Darling Downs Aero Club’s own Greg Wilson took first place, with Western Australia’s Jim Di Menna and Toowoomba’s Mark Guth claiming second and third.

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Forced landings simulate an engine failure landing on a shortened strip of land, where pilots are required to cut power to the engine and glide to a landing, avoiding a bunting fence and landing on the 10 metre, 50 point mark, losing points per ten metres outside of the mark, and being disqualified for either using power during the landing or for knocking down the fence. Western Australia’s Michael Stenson proved too much for the competition and claimed first place in the forced landings. Ed Ten Broeke of Tasmania took second place, with Peter Horsborough of Newcastle coming in third.

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The streamer cutting event called for pilots to drop streamers out of their planes, and spiral down toward the ground, ensuring they cut their streamer 4 times as fast as possible before the 1000m mark. The event, one not for the feint of heart, was won by Tasmania’s Peter Fenton with the fastest streamer cut, and New Zealander David Campbell coming in second, and Ed Ten Broeke from Tasmania claiming the third.

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The formation event was almost cancelled, with the last-minute arrival of the Tasmanian team allowing it to go ahead. The competition was close, with both teams performing excellent executions of the vic, right and left echelons, and the free formation figure eight during the competition. The Newcastle team, flying out of Rutherford near Maitland, proved to be the better team on the day, taking the win over the boys from Tasmania. The team’s victory is made more significant by the fact that pilot #2, Peter Horsborough, was competing with the team for the first time, having only received his ticket three months prior to the event. Peter also took the win as overall champion for the event, cementing his place in the Championships.

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During breaks between competition, pilots both local and interstate, ground crew, kitchen staff, and mechanics were exceptionally happy to discuss various aspects of the event and competitions, as well as covering information on the planes present at the club and those visiting from interstate, the running of an airport, various aspects of piloting, and club membership and activities. Australian Motorsport Magazine staff member Nicole Jenkins was given a chance to participate in a forced landing practice with pilot Dave Kunkel of Newcastle. The Darling Downs Aero Club invites anyone interested in joining friendly local pilots to find them on facebook, or call during business hours on (07) 4634 2777.

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Offering their support as line judges, Gatton University’s 205sqn RAAF Cadets spent Friday and Saturday assisting the judges with their determination of points in both the spot and forced landing competitions. Also in attendance were the Air League, now based out of the Gold Coast, but originally in Toowoomba. The Toowoomba squadron of the Air League was the first for the state, and sadly has not been in operation for many years due to a lack of volunteers. Keen to see the squadron returned to its former glory, the Gold Coast squadron have begun taking expressions of interest for people wanting to join. Open to children aged 8 to 18, the league provides children the opportunity to earn their badges in a variety of aviation specialisations, such as theory of flight and navigation. The club is a not-for-profit organisation, and needs only seven members to begin a squadron in Toowoomba. Anyone interested in enquiring about the Toowoomba squadron can contact Wing Captain Walter Savell; at oc.goldcoast@airleague.com.au

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Targa Tasmania Day 2

Wow Tasmania Wow.  I was told that you had the best roads in Australia and today you showed some of them to us.

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An early day after Porsche hospitality provided dining at one of
Launceston’s best restaurants, Cataract last night.
The alarm came too early this morning with breakfast at 5.45am start for a 6.30am departure, but as we slipped into the cars and started the engines there was an air of excitement around the group this morning.
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The reason – stage one “The Sideling”  It is regarded as one of the key
Targa stages and for the competitors it will be one that is highly sort
after for an outright win and place.  It was the first of the five North
East stages using the Tassie Highway for the course.

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The stage takes us through forestry plantations and there were plenty of sharp corners to test us on this early stage.  The road was smooth and with some great corners to ‘clip’ and some tricky corners that came up quickly.

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On this stage we were able to quickly catch the car in front so on the next touring stage we took the opportunity when they made a toilet stop to move up a spot.

Three more fantastic stages followed with some great twist and turns, simply made for a Porsche – or in fact any car that loves tight and twisty roads.  The brakes never fail to amaze me, how quickly they pull the car up and are ready again on the next corner.  It makes it so much fun.

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Lunch was a quick stop today – a wrap, apple and muesli bar and we were off again. This time to another of Targa’s favorite stages – “Elephant Pass”

This time we saddled up for the 11.16km run, which is definitely one of the toughest of the event.  Some switchback corners, steep drops from the side of the road and rock embankments. There were 3 double cautions (which must be given the respect they deserve) or it could be an early day with your car on the trailer or worse.

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It has a challenging 7km uphill run before a nice, fast winding and
slightly downhill finish. You only had to see the smile on the face of the other drivers to know how much fun this one was.

Moving on to Rossarden, this stage was full of loose gravel at the start and we really had to watch the stone chips as rocks where flicked up from the fat 305.30.’s on the back of the Porsche GTS in front of me.  Again, this stage puts a smile on your face with a fast sweeping start and then the unexpected bends just a few kilometers in.  A steep decent to the finish put a test on the rubber and brakes and I found the ABS cutting in on a couple of heavy braking corners.

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Three double cautions and a triple indicating a steep drop off the side of the road as the corner goes right and gets tight.  Smiles all round once we pass through the finish and tour on to our fabulous afternoon tea at The Red Feather Inn for another fantastic hospitality stop with our friends from Porsche.

After a number of dinner and other functions we are starting to meet a lot of the group and finding that in addition to our interest in motor sport, many share other things in common that make this more than just a driving tour, but something that you fell you belong to.

For the last 5 months I have been excitedly waiting for this day to arrive because today marks the start of the 25th Targa Tasmania.
My wife Nicole, and I in our Porsche 997 4s, join 55 other Porsche owners and driving enthusiasts on the Porsche Driving Experience that runs in conjunction with the drivers competing in the Targa Tasmania
IMG_9127 Over the the next 6 days we get to enjoy some of Tasmania’s best roads as we tour over 1900 km with some 490km of closed road sections. Unlike the competitors who are not speed limited we have a maximum speed limit of 130km per hour but after experience some of the roads today I can tell you that that is more than enough.

Our morning starts early as we lead the competitors cars through the stages, so after breakfast and a morning briefing we head to the cars. Our lead drivers include Alex Davidson and Steven Johnson as well as other experienced and accomplished drivers.

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During our briefing Alex asking us to drive within our limits be safe and to just enjoy ourselves. There will be no F1 contracts on offer at the end of the event he says with a smile on his face.

Having been sorted into groups based on the power of our car and driving experience, a bit of ego creeps in as we jostle for position within our group as we exit the car park.

Leaving the Launceston Country Club, it is a sight to see 56 Porsche in single file formation begin the 21km touring to the first stage. 4.90km flowing stage that runs through beautiful farming country called Legana.
As we drive through the beautiful country side the excitement begins to build. We take the turn off the main road and pass by the police road closure and begin to line up as we approach the beginning of the stage.

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We gradually edge up as car by car speeds off. The sound of the sports exhaust in the GT3’s is a sound that you never grow tired of.
Ok, sports button on, seatbelts tight, windows up and we are ready to go.

The road twists and turns from the very start and opens out to some fast sweeping corners. The engine snarls as it approaches 7000 rpm and the feeling of excitement -or maybe adrenaline, begins to pump through my body and the car dips and dives through the corners.
With the road being closed you can run in the middle of the road and open up the corners without the worry of any on coming traffic.
There is nothing like the feeling of putting a Porsche into a fast sweeping corner and then hard on the brakes and then back on the pedal hard as you accelerate out of the next corner.

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These cars are just made for these roads like this and the feeling is one I can best explain as love. Every twist and turn is complemented with the amazing sound of the rear mounted engine of the 911.

As we exit the end of the first stage I can see what it is that continues
to draw drivers back each year..
Last night, we had the opportunity to have Jim Richard and his co driver Barry Oliver, 8 times outright winners,  join us for a VIP hosted dinner and they spoke about how much fun they had during this event and why this is their 25th event as a result.
One of the great things about doing this event with the Porsche Driving Experience, over being a competitor is the great hospitality that comes with being a guest.

The final stage today was the town stage in Georgetown.  The locals were out on every corner having a great time seeing all the cars come through.
For this stage we had a 60km speed limit but let me tell you, you can still have a lot of fun with tight right angel corners in 1st and 2nd gear and not exceed 60km.
Following the Porsche drive we all headed to the VIP Marque, located on a great corner providing excellent viewing of all the action Wonderful food and drinks were provided and for the next 2 hours we got to see each of the competitors cars through.

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Cheers erupted for anyone who managed to get the car sideways and even louder for the ones that continued to powerslide all the way through the corner.

The afternoon involved a leisurely drive back to Launceston before filling up with fuel to get ready for day 2.  I can’t wait!

Story and Images by Reine Clemow

Archer Falls the place to be

The Archer Falls Airfield annual Endeavour Rally fundraising Drive, Fly, and Gallop in, provided a fun day out for everyone involved. The fantastic volunteers put on an exceptional show, aiming to fundraise for the Groot the Truck’s participation in the Super Endeavour Rally in June this year. Planes flew in from Caboolture, and vehicles from across Southern Queensland made the trip to join the show ‘n’ shine to help raise money for one of Queensland’s biggest disability support charities.
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The Endeavour Foundation was founded in 1951 and works to support more than 3,300 people living with a disability throughout Queensland, New South Wales, and Victoria. The Foundation exists to provide support with education, accommodation and respite, workplace training and integration, and improved recreational and lifestyle opportunities. Up to 40% of the funds needed for these endeavours are achieved through fundraising events such as the Great Endeavour Rally and the Fly In at Archer Falls. Without public support the Foundation would not be able to support those it currently does.

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The Endeavour Rally leaves Ipswich on the 4th of June, and treks to Uluru, witnessing what they hope is a spectacular sunrise before traveling on to arrive in Stanthorpe on the 21st of June. The rally is one of the Endeavour Foundation’s biggest fundraising efforts every year, and has grown to incorporate the annual NSW Great Endeavour rally. Running since 1988, the QLD Great Endeavour Rally is one of the state’s most well-known fundraising events, and draws competitors from across Australia, driving some incredibly unique cars.

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After suffering several setbacks before the rally has even begun, including a hole in the engine at the Jimna fundraising day earlier this year, Groot the Truck hit the field at Archer Falls to give spectators a good show at the Spear the Spud competition, prompting drivers and passengers in cars from all walks of life to throw their hat into the ring and join the fun, adding to the fundraising efforts in the process. The event proved to be a winner for the crowds, with everyone jostling for a good viewing position or to get their car into the competition. Passengers laughed as they attempted to spear the spud, and the winners took home a $500 prize pack.

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The Fly, Drive, and Gallop in event kept visitors entertained throughout the day with displays from a Red Baron tri-plane WWI replica and a Murphy Renegade biplane replica; competitions such as spear the spud and an extensive show ‘n’ shine; face painting and jumping castles for the kids. A stunt plane provided daring opportunities for visitors to view the event from a whole new vantage point; and volunteers manned the canteen throughout the day, providing good quality food and drinks to keep everyone’s motors running.

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Article and photographs by Nicole Jenkins

GCTMC Inc. Announce Three Shire Road Rallies

The Gold Coast Tweed Motorsporting Club Inc. will be conducting three shire road rallies in the north of New South Wales during 2016 with valued support from the Kyogle and Tenterfield Shire Councils; also the communities of Kyogle, Woodenbong and Urbenville.

First up is the Urbenville Sprint Rally on the 28th May that is actually a ‘club level’ short course special stage rally. Rally HQ and the Service Park are located in the beautiful surrounds of the Urbenville Showground. Located in the middle of a short tarmac transport loop is a great piece of road that is highly regarded by rally competitors. It is repeated in both directions multiple times at one minute intervals. The after party will be at the Bowling Club right at Rally HQ. Climatrol Air Conditioning is helping out with the event.

The ‘big one’ is the Brakes Direct Border Ranges Rally on the 27th August centred solely on Kyogle this year. This event is Round 4 of the 2016 MRF Queensland Rally Championship / Clubman Series.

Friday is optional reconnaissance for the two well known stages, media day and documentation into the evening. A ceremonial start right in the center of Kyogle kicks off proceedings Saturday morning. What follows is four fantastic ex WRC stages repeated twice. That is except for Hillyards which will see the cars pass through what is arguably one of the best spectator points in the country a third time, this time at night. All the stages form loops to and from the Service Park and Rally HQ located at the Kyogle Showgrounds. A Super Special at the Showgrounds completes the rally but not the entertainment.

The GCTMC Inc. is working on functions for both Friday and Saturday nights to allow competitors, service crews and officials the opportunity to celebrate rallying. The GCTMC Inc. is very pleased to announce Brakes Direct is again the naming rights sponsor and supported by co-sponsor Forza.

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The Yowie Country Rally on the 22nd October is a multi club special stage rally and is Round 5 of the 2016 MRF Tyres Queensland Novice Rally Championship. Rally HQ and the Service Park are located in the well established Woodenbong Showground. In the middle of a short tarmac transport loop is a great piece of road that is again highly regarded by rally competitors. It forms two stages that are repeated in both directions multiple times. The after party will be on the verandah of the Showground Hall. MPS Web Consulting Services are again helping out with the event.

All these events will offer the opportunity for ‘All Comers’ to enter. All stages are flowing, but technical, formed shire roads. Many are ex WRC stages from the 2009 Repco.

President of the club Stephen Davies says, “It is no secret we are chasing entries from the owners of Classics as these roads are perfect for them. Evidence is the fact that at the Woodenbong event at the end of 2015 the top finishers were all 2WD Classics”.

Camping is available at all the Service Parks and Rally HQ for every event. These parks are all at the local showgrounds and will be fully catered by the local communities. (The upgrading of the Urbenville facilities has been completed.)

Refer www.gctmc.org.au for continuing updates and relevant documents.

BSCC Lockyer Short Course a huge success

Last weekend’s Lockyer Short Course, hosted by the Brisbane Sporting Car Club and run at Thornton near Mulgowie, has been praised as a huge success by all involved.

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The event ran smooth, with a few minor mechanical issues being the only problems over the entire weekend. Several competitors had to leave the event early due to issues with a broken front hub, and a holed sump and transmission damage, but the remainder of the problems were minor enough to enable drivers to fix between rounds, allowing cars back onto the field. Competitors remarked that they enjoyed being able to spectate between rounds, giving an unusual opportunity not often given to drivers at events.

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Recent rains had given the track a much-needed growth boost, and organisers spent countless hours ensuring the track was safe for everyone, cutting grass around the track and removing rocks prior to the event start. Over the weekend, six volunteers associated with the Brisbane Sporting Car Club gave their time to cook up over 200 steak burgers and 14kg’s of sausages, working hard to keep everyone running.

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Vehicles competed over eight classes on the weekend, with driver Clayton Chapman and navigator Adam McGuire taking out the overall win in their Mitsubishi Triton, with a total time of 1:25:21.60; also claiming the title in the Extreme 4WD class. German Autos Motorsport claimed the win in both the Pro Buggy and Pro Lite Buggy classes, with driver Laurence Svenson and nav Janelle Svenson winning the Pro in their GAC1 buggy, and Tait Svenson and nav Leah Hoppe taking the Pro Lite in their Stealth Predator buggy.

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The Super 1650 Buggy class was won by Declan Cummins and Patrick Philip in their Hornet buggy; and Matthew and Michael Brice taking the win in the Superlite NA driving a Polaris PZR90. The Superlite Turbo class was taken by Davig Loughnan and nav Jackson Klein in a Can-Am Maverick Turbo. Steven Orr and nav Nicole Orr won the Performance 2WD class driving their Suzuki Sierra. The Production 4WD class was won by Amy Chapman and navigator Lincoln Staude in their Nissan Patrol.

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Competitors and spectators have expressed their enthusiasm for this event to return next year, with officials promising to do all they can to make it happen.

Story by Nicole Jenkins. Photographs by Lorne Close and Nicole Jenkins

Hirstglen Rally replaced by Urbenville Rally

The Gold Coast Tweed Motorsporting Club Inc. has announced that the Hirstglen Short Course Rally has been replaced by the Urbenville Sprint Rally as the Hirstglen venue is not currently available for motor sport. 

The Urbenville Sprint Rally on Saturday the 28th May is a short course club level rally that does not form part of any series or championship and is open to all comers.

 The format is one shire road stage to be completed three times in both directions and run at one minute intervals as a short course rally. The road to be used is absolutely fantastic. It is flowing but technical and will suit two-wheel drive Classics perfectly.

 Crews will transport via a short tarmac loop with central servicing at the recently refurbished Urbenville Showgrounds, with good facilities, catering and camping. There will be the opportunity to celebrate after the event at the Bowls Club located right at the Showgrounds.

 This is a great beginner event or one for the experienced competitor who wants to dust off the cobwebs. Open to all comers so put this one on your calendar as the entry list is limited to thirty cars.

 Refer www.gctmc.org.au for documentation when published.

Sandown F1 Air Race

Melbourne’s F1 Sandown Air Race took to the skies recently to show off the action-packed sport of aeromodelling. The event was a huge success, exceeding expectations of organisers, with this year’s attendance up 20% on last year and around 3,500 people turning up to join the fun. The high turnout has organisers thrilled to see the sport so widely supported by the Australian public.

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The main event comprised of the F1 Air Race, an adrenaline-fueled race showcasing some of Australia’s best RC pilots. The course was made up of three pylons, which were navigated over ten laps, totaling 650 metres per lap. Four planes competed in each heat, with Neil Addicot piloting his OS GT60 engine plane to take the title. Scott Matthews and his DL61 took out second, with Cliff McIver and his OS GT60 picking up third place.

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Adding to the excitement of the day were demonstrations by World Champion Pylon Racers, showcasing exceptional maneuvering skills in a fast-paced event. Displays of off-road buggies, on-road cars, drag racers, tanks, and trucks, kept crowds well entertained, and a showcase of gliders, drones, extreme helicopters, and scale model jets kept eyes on the sky.

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Sandown’s 2016 F1 Air Race was a widely successful day, with everyone pleased to see the rise in remote control sports as a fun family passtime in Australia. Organisers are hoping the trend of greater turnouts carries forward to next years’ event.

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Story by Nicole Jenkins

Photography by Chris Daley