CLUB LEVEL AND JUNIOR MOTORSPORT SUFFERS CRUEL BLOW

By Rallysprint, Twilight Rallysprint

The popular Whiteline Tarmac Rallysprint Series held over summer at the Sydney Dragway appears to have joined the long list of cancelled events in 2020, but not because of the current COVID pandemic.

The event, organised by the North Shore Sporting Car Club, has had a key focus on the safe development of Junior drivers and driving skills and the Rallysprint series has run successfully for the last 8 years.

Whilst the event is hotly contested by some of Australia’s leading drivers it is also extremely popular with beginners and junior drivers. The event even attracting support from a major vehicle manufacturer committed to the development of safe driving standards.

However, yesterday the club was given with the disappointing news that the dates were no longer viable and there were no suitable alternatives for the coming season.

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“Publicity had already begun and we had received several entries for the first round on the 8th of October, but at this stage the event will not proceed at its current venue” said Brett Middleton, the President of North shore Sporting Car Club.

“Disappointingly, we also no longer have access to a grassed area leased from Sydney Dragway for holding Motorkana’s and Gymnkana’s.” added Middleton. The grassed area will be used to re-locate excavations from extensions to the car park in the main Dragway complex.

The club now hopes that through the support of the NSW Office of Sport and the Western Sydney Parklands Trust that it can recover and rebuild for the future.

“We hope for a solution to provide better access to club level motorsport within the new master plan for the motorsport precinct,” concluded Middleton.

Background

The Whiteline Tarmac Rallysprint series is a closed motorsport event held within the confines of Sydney Dragway, using the bitumen car parks and access roads. The Rallysprint series is held on Thursday nights, during the daylight savings summer months. Typically renting the venue at a time and day of the week that does not interfere with other events.

The Rallysprint won the Best Motorsport event in NSW for 2019 at the Motorsport Australia annual awards and on average attracts over 450 entries per annum. Approximately half are either under 18 years old or motorsport beginners looking for a safe venue to learn driving skills. The event injects over $700,000 annually into the NSW motoring economy.

The club’s other location started as an unused parcel of Dragway land that the Club developed for use as a successful junior Training facility for safer driving. Children and teenagers as young as 12 can safely learn to drive at this facility under the guidance of experienced motorsport mentors and governance of Motorsport Australia.

The Dragway leases the land from the Western Sydney Parklands Trust.

Partners Support Midstate Freight Caves Classic Rally

By Caves Classic 2020

North Shore Sporting Car Club today formally announced a range of partners for the Caves Classic Rally to be conducted on the 5th of September. The event is Round 2 of the Motor Traders Association of NSW Rally Championship.

Midstate Freight will be the naming rights partner and business owners Ray and Michael Winwood-Smith think that the event is a perfect partnership for their Bathurst based company.

“We are stoked to be involved in the rally” said Ray Winwood-Smith. “The event uses some of the best roads in the country and I for one can’t wait to see rally cars back in some forests that haven’t been used in years.”

“Our business is based close by in Bathurst, so the rally is the perfect opportunity for us to get involved. We provide local, national and international express freight services to central-west NSW, so the rally is right in the middle of our customer base” added Winwood-Smith.

Lazer High Performance lighting has also given their support to the event and will provide a rally light package as a prize. Former rally competitor and Lazer Lighting Regional Manager, Kirk Marks is looking forward to the two night stages on offer.

“Our brand works perfectly with a rally that has night stages” Marks said. “Because we manufacture and sell rally lights, the Caves Classic Rally is the perfect opportunity for us to showcase our range of lights. I’m also really looking forward to giving away some of our product at the podium” Marks added.

Several other brands and businesses have put their support behind the event including Hoosier Tires Australia who will be the Service Park Partner.

The nine special stages will be supported by Shamrock Haulage, SSS Automotive, SW Motorsport, Premier Pools, Premier Panel Beating and Specialised Brake and Clutch Service Penrith.

The Big Trout Motor Inn, Titania Motel, Royal Hotel, Jenolan Holiday Park and Hathaway Accommodation are also supporting the event with accommodation and rally teams are encouraged to use the official accommodation providers and mention the event when booking.

The rally will be based out of the NSW town of Oberon with the Hoosier Service park located at the Oberon Rugby League Football Club.

Accommodation Partners Announced

By Caves Classic 2020, News

Several leading Accommodation facilities in Oberon have joined the Midstate Freight Caves Classic Rally as Partners. These Partners are getting ready for the weekend of the 5th of September with deals available for Rally Teams and Officials.

Hathaway Accommodation
Contact Vicki on 0408 228 846 to book

Hathaway has 13 Rooms all with ensuite and 3 communal Kitchens. Queen Deluxe Rooms are $125 per night and King Single Rooms are $115 per night.

Hawkes Rest

Contact Vicki on 0408 228 846 to book special rally rates
Hawkes Rest is a 4 bedroom house in Oberon with 4 Queen beds and 2 Single Beds. 4 nights is $1,000 (normally $1800) or 2 nights is $700 (normally $930).

https://business.facebook.com/hawkesrest/

Big Trout Motor Inn

Contact Pav and Chandra Ratnan on 0428 714 236
The Big Trout Motor Inn is in the township of Oberon, with 33 ground floor units, there are facilities to suit everyone. Two units in the complex also have luxurious spa baths

http://www.bigtrout.com.au/
bigtroutmotel@gmail.com

Titania Motel

Contact Brad Gorrell on 02 6336 1377
The Titania Motel is situated close to Oberon Town Centre and has a fully licensed restaurant offering both Indian and Australian meals. Rally guests are welcome and are well catered for.

https://titaniamotel.com.au/
reception@titaniamotel.com.au

Royal Hotel

Contact Amber on 02 6336 1011
Accommodation is comfortable and simply styled to create an inviting country feel.  The Hotel itself is conveniently located in the centre of Oberon

https://royalhoteloberon.com.au/
office@royalhoteloberon.com.au

Jenolan Holiday Park

Book and pay online. Jenolan Holiday Park offers a range of accommodation in Oberon to suit rally groups and families. Relax in the peaceful environment and enjoy the modern facilities

https://www.jenolanholidaypark.com.au/
jenolancaravanpark@bigpond.com

Toyota stamp their name on the AMH Automotive Group Rally of the Bay

By News, Rally of the Bay 2020

Harry Bates and John McCarthy have won the 2020 AMH Automotive Group Rally of the Bay, taking the win convincingly over teammate and brother Lewis Bates with co-driver Anthony McLoughlin. Bates was in the Toyota Yaris AP4 rally car that also took him to victory in the 2019 Australian Rally Championship.

“A really tough day, the roads were very challenging, but very happy to be here and have the win” Bates said at the end of the final stage on River Road. “It’s a really challenging road, even in the day, but at night it was even more challenging.” added Bates.

Bates led from the start, winning every stage, and ending the event with a one minute and twenty second margin over the other Toyota Yaris AP4, driven by Lewis Bates.

“It’s been a really good day,” said Lewis. “It’s good to be back in the car, it’s been nine months since we’ve done a rally. We’ve got a bit of homework to do to catch Harry, but we’ve had a solid day and we’re happy with second,” Lewis added.

On the third podium position was Victorians Darren Windus and Joe Brkic in a Subaru WRX STi. Windus was battling with his son Arron for outright positions when the younger Windus went off the road in special stage 4.

“We’ve had an absolute gem of a time,” Windus said sitting in the car after just completing the final stage. “It’s probably a good result by the look of it today too, so that makes it all worth it” he continued.

In the East Coast Classic Rally Series, Mal Keogh and Andrew Bennett came out on top to win the Classic section by almost 4 minutes in an Audi Quattro S1. Keogh also finished well in the outright results with eighth place.

The two-wheel drive victory went to Tony Sullens and Kaylie Newell in a Citroen DS3. Whilst the front wheel drive car is at a disadvantage against its four-wheel drive counterparts, Sullens drove the small pocket rocket into sixth outright.

“Wow, is all I can say” Sullens said. “It’s the best field we’ve ever seen in a state rally in the history of Australia I reckon, and a top six I’ll take any day” he continued.

“I’ve driven as fast as I’ve driven in all my life today and I’m really happy and rewarded. I’ve found new levels of comfort with the car, so it’s good.” Sullens said.

The next round of the MTA NSW Rally Championship is the Caves Classic Rally on September the 5th in the Oberon district.

Full results are available online at ChrisSport

Narooma Rally winner to take on AMH Automotive Group Rally of the Bay

By News, Rally of the Bay 2020

Jamie Price and Maisie Place will line up at the AMH Automotive Group Rally of the Bay this weekend in a MkII Ford Escort. The pair had a series of strong results last season, most notably claiming outright honours in the NSW South Coast based Narooma Forest Rally.

The Rally of the Bay, also held in the Eurobodalla Shire, gives teams the option to choose to use a basic roadbook with route charts or more complex and detailed pace-notes. Price and Place have chosen to use the route charted option, often called a ‘Blind Rally’, which from previous form shows they will be up for a great result.

The Rally of the Bay was originally to be the second round of the Motor Traders Association NSW Rally Championship, but with the COVID Pandemic putting a stop to all motorsport, the event will now be the first round and also the first rally to run in Australia since COVID.

Even though there has been extra time to get rally cars prepared, many teams have been waiting months to get into the forests.

“We’re really happy about our first rally for the year,” Price said. “The car has a new gearbox fitted for me to try out but other than that, it’s how it was at Narooma. We aren’t too fussed about results, we’re just really just hoping for a clean run and get out there and enjoy ourselves,” Price added.

Place is also looking forward to being back in the car and competing in the Batemans Bay Forests.

“I’m really excited to be back in the car with Jamie,” Place said. “This is the first we’ve competed since our victory at Narooma last year. We’re hoping we can pull together a similar result, but we’re really just excited to be back out there and competing.

“There’s a very strong and impressive line-up for Rally of the Bay, so it’ll definitely be an exciting rally. There’s been such a big break between events, so I’m very excited to finally be back in a rally car,” Place concluded.

The AMH Automotive Group Rally of the Bay is based in Batemans Bay, with Head Quarters at the Coachhouse Marina Resort and supported by the Village Centre and Bridge Plaza shopping centre.

Richie Rallying to Support Batemans Bay

By News, Rally of the Bay 2020

Shamrock Motorsport driver, Richie Dalton, will be looking to make it three wins in a row when he heads to Batemans Bay on the weekend of the 4th of July for the AMH Automotive Group Rally of the Bay.

Dalton and co-driver, Dale Moscatt, have won the event for the past two years and despite a very competitive line up at this years event, they are hoping for yet another victory.

The factory Toyota Gazoo Racing team will launch a two-car assault at the Rally of the Bay and are likely to be Dalton’s biggest rivals. The Toyota’s showed great speed last season, but Dalton’s confidence is high, and he knows his Ford Fiesta Proto can be competitive if everything goes right on the day.

The COVID-19 Pandemic has forced a halt to motorsport across the country, with the Rally of the Bay being the first rally event back on the calendar. The long wait for a start to the rally season has contributed to a large contingent of teams from across Australia including competitors from Melbourne, Brisbane and even as far away as central Queensland.

“Firstly, it’s great to have rallying back, and the organisers of the Rally of the Bay have done an incredible job to get the rally up and running,” Dalton said.

“The Batemans Bay region has had it tough over the last six months – first with bushfires and now with Coronavirus – so we’re all looking forward to visiting the region and helping to support local businesses.

“We’re coming for a purpose though, and that’s to try and win the rally for a third time, which will be tough against such strong competition.

“We’ve done our preparation though, and after a test session in the car on Thursday we’ll be ready to give it our best shot.”

Dalton is member of the organising club, North Shore Sporting Car Club and also a big supporter of the Rally of the Bay. His business, Shamrock Haulage, sponsoring stage four, the ‘Follow the River’ special stage along the extremely popular River Rd.

Dalton will carry the number one door sticker for the event, a reward for winning the 2019 running of the Rally. However, he will start second on the road behind reigning Australian Champion, Harry Bates in a Toyota Yaris AP4.

“I’m delighted to have been able to keep the number one on the door, despite the Australian Rally Champion being in the field,” Dalton added.

“I feel like we have earned the right to have it for the event, and it’s proved to be good luck in the past, so hopefully that’s a good omen.”

The Shamrock Motorsport Ford Fiesta will be sporting a brand new ‘Irish’ themed livery for the Rally of the Bay, which has already drawn a lot of attention from rally fans on social media.

“Hopefully the crew perform as well as the car looks,” Dalton added.

“The Rally of the Bay is an event that both Dale and I really enjoy, and we can’t wait to hit the stages on Saturday morning,” Dalton concluded.

Outback challenger getting practice at AMH Automotive Group Rally Of The Bay

By News, Rally of the Bay 2020

Michael Ward at the Classic Outback Trial in 2018 – PHOTO Ian Smith

Michael Ward Rallysport is looking forward to getting back out in the dirt at the AMH Automotive Group Rally of the Bay.

Driver Michael Ward and Co-Driver John Fraser will be using the event to start preparations for this year’s Classic Outback Trial scheduled for later this year in November.

“It’s great to be able to get back into the driver’s seat,” Ward said. “We’re using this event to start our preparations for the last Classic Outback Trial (COT) which has been moved to early November,” he added.

Because the COT is a ‘blind event’, the team will be running the Rally of the Bay using the Roadbook rather than choosing the pacenote option.

“Seat time, and practice reading the road at competition speed is what’s needed for us leading up to the COT. With limited events this year, we’re grateful the AMH Automotive Group Rally of the Bay is on schedule,” Michael said.

Co-Driver, John Fraser teamed up with Michael for the 2016 running of the Classic Outback Trial where they finished first in class. Fraser was then back for the 2018 running of the outback event, as well as the Alpine Rally of East Gippsland in 2017 and 2019.

The team will be running their venerable 1976 Toyota Corolla TE37 replica built in 2013 specifically for long distance rallies. The 1600cc 2TG engine has a ‘poor man’s close ratio’ gearbox from a Lexus IS200 allowing the correct ratio for any situation. However, the smooth roads at the AMH Automotive Group Rally of the Bay won’t be giving the MCA Gold suspension its usual workout!

Ward, based in Melbourne, started rallying back in the late seventies, ‘retired’ in 1986, having completed the State Bank Discovery Trial, and then returned to the sport in 2010. He has always had a keen interest in trials and long distance rally events.

Fraser, from Orange, NSW, has been navigating since his late teens, guiding many notable drivers. He is also an accomplished driver, winning the NSW Rally Championship class N2 twice, was second in the 1996 ARC to the works Daihatsu team (by 1 point!) and won his class in the 1996 Playstation Round Australia Trial.

The AMH Automotive Rally of the Bay will be conducted in the Forest surrounding Batemans Bay on the 4th of July.

Marco Jansen adds AMH Automotive Group Rally of the Bay to his bucket list

By News, Rally of the Bay 2020

The Central Queensland pairing of Marco Jansen and Cameron McIntosh are making an epic 19-hour journey to compete at the AMH Automotive Group Rally of the Bay.

Jansen has been competing in rally events for many years, starting in a Golf Mark 1 and progressing through VW competition cars until purchasing his current car, an ex-works VW Polo. Having now owned this car for several years and with work commitments that have kept him out of the driver’s seat, the Rockhampton driver is keen to get back into racing.

After putting the VW Polo back together and desperately needing a rally inspired rush of adrenalin, the goal of getting to the AMH Automotive Group Rally of the Bay was set.

“I’ve travelled through the Batemans Bay area over recent years,” Jansen said. “I’ve serviced for other competitors at rally events, so I’ve definitely put the Rally of the Bay high on my bucket list of things to do.”

“The quality of the roads used for the rally, plus the organisation of the event itself and the general comradery helped me make up my mind that I wanted to do it,” Jansen said.

The horrendous end of 2019 and terrible start to 2020, with fires, rain and COVID having a huge impact on people in the area, this was the ideal chance to give back and at the same time get some competitive miles under his belt.

“We’ve got a few extra challenges in the way for us having to travel all the way down from Central Queensland. For us to attend the event and be able to meet all the restrictions related to COVID, like social distancing, border securities, plus all the systems and controls put in place by the rally organisers hasn’t really dampened my enthusiasm at all,” Jansen said.

“Even with all these new requirements to rally, it isn’t putting me off at all. Bring on the AMH Automotive Group Rally of the Bay 2020.” Jansen said as he packed ready for the long drive to Batemans Bay.

Teaming up with co-driver Cameron McIntosh, from Gladstone in Central Queensland, the team are looking forward to some good roads, tall stories, and great competition.

The AMH Automotive Group Rally of the Bay will be held on Saturday the 4th of July in Batemans Bay, NSW.

NSSCC to donate a Colorado Ute to the bAy Team

By News, Rally of the Bay 2020

Did you see the NSSCC video where Eurobodalla Shire Council Mayor Liz Innes spoke about how the Rally of the Bay can help the local Community?

If not, watch now below…

In the video, NSSCC featured three people who were severely affected by the devastating summer bushfires. There was no explanation of who they are and why they were in the video, but it is now time to reveal their stories.

But first, during the bushfire crisis, many organisations raised money to help those affected and NSSCC was one of those organisations who raised funds to assist with the recovery.

The Sydney based Car Club has a special connection with Batemans Bay and the Eurobodalla Shire because of the AMH Automotive Group Rally of the Bay, a motorsport event held in the Forests of the Eurobodalla Shire each year for the past 30 years.

The Car Club wanted to use the money raised by NSSCC members and friends to help a great cause close to the Bay. NSSCC President, Brett Middleton, discovered a group of people calling themselves “The bAy TEAM” who had been helping people recover from the bushfires by building much needed accommodation. And what a story it is, but before we get into that, let’s meet the people from the Video.

Magenta – Magenta and her family live in Mogo, about a kilometre from the flying finish marker in “Run to Mogo” special stage. During the bushfires, her house was completely destroyed by the fires. Her partner Damien stayed to fight, but he had to leave because the intensity of the fire was so fierce that he had no hope of saving the house and risked losing his life if he stayed. And, he was well prepared.

Their family still don’t have a new house built and their beautiful ‘picture postcard’ block of land still looks like a bomb has hit it. They are living in their shed, that somehow managed to be saved.

The Bay Team came in and fit out the shed, lining it with Plasterboard and making it liveable. Much of the labour was provided at well below cost and many volunteer hours were spent completing the fit-out.

Joe – Joe lost everything in the fires and is now living in a very second-hand caravan close to where Magenta’s home used to stand. The caravan leaks very badly and is covered with a tarpaulin to help keep rain out. The Bay Team will be building a new place for Joe to live and he’s looking forward to moving out of the Caravan.

David – David lost his house, possessions and all his work equipment in the bushfires. But instead of focussing on his own recovery, he immediately went out and helped others fight the fires, helping to save many properties from destruction. In the aftermath of the fires, he has gone above and beyond to help people in need, assisting those who couldn’t get to the relief centres and doing whatever he could.

David has a passion for helping people and started to assist those who had lost everything start the rebuilding process. He formed the bAy TEAM and together with a small group of trades people and skilled workers has helped rebuild people’s houses… and lives.

The bAy TEAM is a business, but it’s focus has been on helping people and not making a profit. David has put his effort into getting the job done and not making the business profitable. He and his team have put in many hours of their own time, resources and skills to rebuild the Batemans Bay and surrounding community, whilst ignoring their own needs.

Colorado Ute Donation

North Shore Sporting Car Club wanted to do more than just donate some money, so it was decided that the club would use the funds raised to purchase equipment for the bushfire recovery. It was decided that NSSCC would purchase a $12,990 second-hand Colorado Ute to donate to the bAy TEAM.

AMH Automotive Group gladly assisted the club to secure the vehicle and their contribution towards its purchase reflects the fantastic relationship NSSCC has had with AMH as naming rights partner for the Rally of the Bay.

The Coachhouse Marina Resort and the Village Centre & Bridge Plaza shopping Centres has also assisted with several yet to be revealed gifts and the vehicle will be on display in the Village Centre this week.

The Colorado will be given to the bAy TEAM on Friday the 3rd of July at 1pm in the Village Centre by several representatives of North Shore Sporting Car Club. The club would like to thank those who donated to the fund over Christmas.

Stanford Motorsport to contest Clubman Series at AMH Automotive Group Rally of the Bay

By News, Rally of the Bay 2020

Stanford Motorsport are preparing their Datsun Stanza and getting ready for the Techworkz Automotive NSW Clubman Rally Series, which kicks off this weekend at the AMH Automotive Group Rally of the Bay.

Driver Dennis Stanford from West Nowra will be joined by Sydney based Co-Driver, Tim Woods for the 2020 running of the Rally of the Bay and the team are hoping for a good result in their first event for the season.

“We won the Clubman Rally series in the same Datsun Stanza that we run now, back in 2010,” Stanford said. “This year we’re looking to do the full Techworkz Automotive Clubman Series in the Stanza, and hopefully we’ll do well again,” he said.

“It’ll be good to get back out there again after these COVID restrictions,” Stanford added.

Stanford has been involved in rallying for over 30 years and it’s not just him that loves motorsport, his whole family are involved, being active members of the local car club, the Shoalhaven and Kiama district Automotive Club (SKADC).

The Team were last at the Rally of the Bay in 2019 and this rally is a favourite for the team. Stanford enjoys the well maintained and flowing forestry roads and particularly enjoys the long, 44km ‘Run to Mogo’ stage.

Stanford’s best recent result was finishing the 2018 Narooma Forest Rally in 10th and believes the LA Lancer team of Ron and Steve McKinnon as his biggest rival at the Batemans Bay event.

Stanford puts the success of his rally team down to consistency and reliability with the car being tuned by Datsun specialist, Stewart Wilkins from SW Motorsport. The team is also supported by Ausdeck Nowra, Fair Dinkum Removals Nowra, and Balance Motorsport Australia Rally Light Pods.

“I’d like to thank Tim Woods for stepping up and co-driving for me at the Rally of the Bay and also a special thanks to Steve Barry from Sanitar Shoalhaven and his family for putting their hands up to service for me,” Stanford concluded.

The AMH Automotive Group Rally of the Bay will be held on the 4th of July, starting at 8:45am in Batemans Bay.