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Rallying returned to the Oberon area on Saturday, November 3, with the running of the AMSAG Oberon Rally, Round 6 of the 2018 Pipe King Southern Cross series. The Supplementary Regulations for the event can be seen by clicking on the picture on the right.

The event was based at the Black Springs Hall, corner of Dog Rocks Rd and Abercrombie Rd, Black Springs, with the service area in the Forestry Picnic Area located opposite Rally HQ. Weather was perfect and the thunderstorm of the night before didn’t leave any boggy roads behind to trouble competitors, although it might have caused some concerns for people camped overnight.


Click here to see the service instructions

Scenes in the rather crowded service park.
As I do my rally media work including videoing stages
in a Falcon wagon with rear leaf springs I was delighted
to see the RTV ute in the event. Unfortunately it didn't
get too far before retiring so I never saw it in action.

The rally was run over eight competitive stages (four stages, each run twice) for a total competitive distance of 108.6km, all within Vulcan State Forest. The meal break between stages 4 and 5 gave crews the opportunity to make any necessary repairs and to sample the catering provided by the Black Springs P&C who were running a barbecue at the hall.


Where the rally went.


What happened on the day


Entries. All 58 of them!

Spectator access was excellent, with all points easy to get to and offering good views of cars doing spectacular things. With 55 cars starting the rally there was a good variety of cars and driving styles to watch


Click here to see the spectator instructions.

Now let's have some photos.

After taking these photos I moved on to another location, where disaster struck.

I took one photo (the one on the left) and decided that it would be better to stand somewhere else. As I turned I tripped over some blackberries and my camera was buried lens first into the ground. I managed to get one more shot out of it (the one on the right), but when I touched the zoom button a message saying "Lens error" appeared on the screen at the back of the device and it never worked from then on. I said some rude words and took some pictures with my phone, but as I bought the thing to use as a phone, not a camera, the results weren't what I wanted.

I decided to use my GoPro at the next place I went to, but like the phone that's mainly a phone, it's a video camera and using it for still shots is less than satisfactory. Here are the only useful photos I got from it.

As it's really a video camera, I took some short videos of passing cars. These were the cars at the rear of the field they weren't the fastest ones in the rally, but they still provided a bit of a spectacle.

Overall winners of the event were Richard Shimmon and Katie Fletcher in a Mitsubishi Lancer EVO VII. As they set fastest time on all eight stages they would have been hard to beat. It was obviously a day that suited all-wheel-drive as cars with this specification took the first five placings.

1Richard Shimmon/ Kate Fletcher Mitsubishi Lancer EVO VII
2Ron Moore/Jo MooreMitsubishi Lancer EVO VI
3Chris Jaques/Kate JaquesMitsubishi Lancer EVO IX
4Joe Chapman/Adrian GrabhamSubaru WRX
5Mark Kent/Tristan Kent Mitsubishi Lancer EVO III



Click here for full results

 The AMSAG web site is at http://www.amsag.com.au.

If history repeats the next rally to be run out of Oberon will be the first round of the 2019 NSW Rally Championship, probably in April. The forests around the town make it a perfect place for the sport and nobody ever leaves disappointed.

A report on the rally appeared in the Oberon Review on November 8, 2018.


Copyright © 2016- Peter Bowditch

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