Australian Rally Championship

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Australian Rally Championship
Australian rally championship logo.gif
Category Rallying
Country Australia
Inaugural season 1968
Drivers' champion Eli Evans
Glen Weston
Official website rally.com.au
Motorsport current event.svg Current season
Australian Rally Championship, West Australian Round, night stage. 2006.

The Australian Rally Championship (ARC) is Australia's leading off-road motor rally competition. A multi-event national championship has been held each year since 1968.

Current Competition[edit]

The Australian Rally Championship takes in some of the country’s most stunning and picturesque locations. The 2010 season starts with Rally Tasmania, the only tarmac round in the championship. Based in the small coastal city of Burnie, Australia's longest-running tarmac rally is celebrating its 30th Anniversary this year.

The second round sees the championship head across the country for the Quit Forest Rally. The rally is based in the coastal tourist town of Busselton, near Margaret River in Western Australia. Many of the rally stages are narrow and tree-lined, and are often covered in the notoriously slippery, ball-bearing gravel.

The third round of the championship takes place in the forest roads in the hills around Coffs Harbour, New South Wales. The Coffs Coast Rally, known for its numerous surface changes, was cancelled in 2009 due to heavy rains and road damage.

The championship then travels to South Australia for the Scouts Rally SA. The rally stages are located in the Barossa Valley, Adelaide Hills and Mount Barker regions, and are within driving distance of the state capital Adelaide. The rally stages are the smoothest and fastest in the championship, making the rally a favourite for competitors and spectators alike.

Round four of the Australian Rally Championship, and also a round of the FIA Asia-Pacific Championship, is the International Rally of Queensland. The stages are held in the forests around the township of Imbil, in the Mary Valley just north of Brisbane. The stages vary between tight and technical and fast and flowing, with many rough sections that give this event a reputation as a potential car-breaker.

The final round of the ARC will be a new round in the state of Victoria. The event is set to based in the town of Drouin, located about 100 kilometres east of Melbourne. The rally stages are to be held mostly in the foothills of Mount Baw Baw, using forestry roads in the Nojoee - Neerim district.

The Championship itself is a highly competitive series, featuring a host of talented teams all racing the clock for the honour of being champion. The competition is often very close, with drivers trading stage times over the gravel and tarmac roads and often finishing just tenths of seconds ahead, or behind, their rivals. In the forest, the action is thrilling. Cars slide sideways through high-speed corners and dodge and dive over challenging crested roads as the team-work between driver and co-driver is tested to the limit.

Competition Classes[edit]

A Subaru Impreza WRX competing in an Australian rally.

The Australian Rally Championship caters to a range of different competitors in the series and with a number of classes and categories; competitors can start rallying at the level that best suits their budget. The outright competition is fought out amongst the names of rallying and is the ultimate test for the competitors at the pointy end of the field. The ARC’s top drivers compete in Group N (Production) - cars which have direct links to their road-going counterparts. The ARC also offers opportunities for manufacturers who don’t produce Group N cars to build comparable machinery under both the Group N (P) and FIA Super 2000 regulations. Another award that is desirable for competitors to chase is the Privateers Cup for competitors who don't have support from the manufacturer teams. The F16 Championship is the small car category (1600cc, 2WD) and a budget-level place to start rallying. The outright winner of the Championship is an Australian Champion in the small car category and is added to the record books. The Aussie Cup is the Australian award for large cars (over 2500cc) that enables competitors in the big cars to run popular passenger car models such as V6 and V8’s. Amongst the outright awards are the opportunities to chase individual class awards that are based on car capacity and specification which gives competitors the opportunity to pursue class victories.

The Cars[edit]

The more successful cars in recent years of the ARC have been the 4WD 2.0L Turbo models such as the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolutions, Subaru Impreza WRX STIs and the Toyota Corolla ARC-spec cars, which are actually running Toyota Celica GT-Four engines, 4WD system, etc.[citation needed]. Michael Guest and Mark Stacey campaigned a RWD 2.5L normally aspirated Ford Focus during the 2006 season, switching to a Ford Fiesta prepared for the Super 2000 class in 2007. Most of the cars in the privateer fields are of a similar make, but other makes with success have been the Mitsubishi Mirage, Mitsubishi Galant VR-4, Subaru Legacy, Datsun 1600, Datsun 240Z, Nissan Stanza and the Suzuki Swift GTi.

The Drivers[edit]

As with the cars, it tends to be the factory-entered drivers that take the outright placings. Some of these drivers have been Cody Crocker, Mark and Scott Pedder, Simon Evans, Neal Bates, the late Possum Bourne and Ed Ordynski. Privateer crews that have enjoyed recent success include, Dean Herridge and Steve Glenney.

Winners[edit]

Possum Bourne and Craig Vincent (1998)

Australian Rally Champions[edit]

Year Driver Co-Driver Vehicle
1968 Harry Firth (VIC) Graham Hoinville (VIC) Ford Cortina
1969 Frank Kilfoyle (VIC) Doug Rutherford (NSW) Ford Cortina Lotus
1970 Robert Watson (VIC) Jim McAuliffe (VIC) Renault R8 Gordini
1971 Colin Bond (NSW) George Shepheard (NSW) Holden Torana LC XU1
1972 Colin Bond (NSW) George Shepheard (NSW) Holden Torana LJ XU1
1973 Peter Lang (ACT) Warwick Smith (VIC) Holden Torana LJ XU1
1974 Colin Bond (NSW) George Shepheard (NSW) Holden Torana LJ XU1
1975 Ross Dunkerton (WA) John Large (WA) Datsun 240Z
1976 Ross Dunkerton (WA) Jeff Beaumont (VIC) Datsun 260Z
1977 Ross Dunkerton (WA)
George Fury (VIC)
Jeff Beaumont (VIC)
Monty Suffern (VIC)
Datsun 260Z
Datsun 1600
1978 Greg Carr (ACT) John Dawson-Damer (NSW) * Ford Escort RS
1979 Ross Dunkerton (WA) Jeff Beaumont (TAS) Datsun Stanza
1980 George Fury (VIC) Monty Suffern (VIC) Datsun Stanza
1981 Geoff Portman (VIC) Ross Runnalls (VIC) Datsun Stanza
1982 Geoff Portman (VIC) Ross Runnalls (VIC) Datsun 1600
1983 Ross Dunkerton (WA) Geoff Jones (NSW) Datsun 1600
1984 David Officer (VIC) Kate Officer (VIC) Mitsubishi Galant
1985 Barry Lowe (SA) Kevin Pedder (SA) Subaru RX Turbo
1986 Barry Lowe (SA) Kate Officer (VIC) ** Subaru RX Turbo
1987 Greg Carr (ACT) Fred Gocentas (ACT) Alfa Romeo GTV6
1988 Murray Coote (QLD) Iain Stewart (QLD) Mazda 323 4WD
1989 Greg Carr (ACT) Mick Harker (ACT) Lancia Delta Integrale
1989S Dick Manning (SA) Kevin Attwood (SA) Ford Falcon XY
1990 Ed Ordynski (SA) Mark Nelson (SA) Mitsubishi Galant VR-4
1991 Robert Herridge (WA) Steve Vanderbyl (WA) Subaru Liberty RS
1992 Robert Herridge (WA) Mark Nelson (SA) Subaru Liberty RS
1993 Neal Bates (ACT) Coral Taylor (NSW) Toyota Celica GT-Four
1994 Neal Bates (ACT) Coral Taylor (NSW) Toyota Celica GT-Four
1995 Neal Bates (ACT) Coral Taylor (NSW) Toyota Celica GT-Four
1996 Possum Bourne (NZ) Craig Vincent (NSW) Subaru Impreza WRX 555
1997 Possum Bourne (NZ) Craig Vincent (NSW) Subaru Impreza WRX 555
1998 Possum Bourne (NZ) Craig Vincent (NSW) Subaru Impreza WRX 555
1999 Possum Bourne (NZ) Craig Vincent (NSW) Subaru Impreza WRC98
2000 Possum Bourne (NZ) Mark Stacey (QLD) Subaru Impreza WRC98
2001 Possum Bourne (NZ) Craig Vincent (NSW) Subaru Impreza WRC
2002 Possum Bourne (NZ) Mark Stacey (QLD) Subaru Impreza WRX STi
2003 Cody Crocker (VIC) Greg Foletta (VIC) Subaru Impreza WRX STi
2004 Cody Crocker (VIC) Greg Foletta (VIC) Subaru Impreza WRX STi
2005 Cody Crocker (VIC) Dale Moscatt (NSW) Subaru Impreza WRX STi Spec-C
2006 Simon Evans (VIC) Sue Evans (NSW) Toyota Corolla Sportivo (NP)
2007 Simon Evans (VIC) Sue Evans (NSW) Toyota Corolla Sportivo (NP)
2008 Neal Bates (ACT) Coral Taylor (NSW) Toyota Corolla S2000
2009 Simon Evans (VIC) Sue Evans (NSW) Toyota Corolla S2000
Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX
2010 Simon Evans (VIC) Sue Evans (NSW) Subaru Impreza WRX STi
2011 Justin Dowel (VIC) Matt Lee (VIC) Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX
2012 2WD: Eli Evans (VIC) Glen Weston (QLD) Honda Jazz
4WD: Michael Boaden (NSW) Helen Cheers (NSW) Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX
2013 Eli Evans (VIC) Glen Weston (QLD) Honda Jazz

* Fred Gocentas co-drove for Greg Carr during the 1978 season while Dawson-Damer co-drove for Colin Bond while also scoring points on one occasion co-driving for Dave Morrow which enabled him to beat Gocentas to the co-driver's title.
** Kate Officer co-drove for David Officer during the 1986 season.

Group N Rally Championship[edit]

Year Driver Co-Driver Vehicle
1990 Ed Ordynski (SA) Mark Nelson (SA) Mitsubishi Galant VR4
1991 Bob Nicoli (WA) Brian Harwood (WA) Daihatsu Charade GTti
1992 Robert Herridge (WA) Mark Nelson (SA) Subaru Liberty RS
1993 Ed Ordynski (SA) Mark Stacey (SA) Mitsubishi Lancer RS-E
1994 Ed Ordynski (SA) Mark Stacey (SA) Mitsubishi Lancer RS-E2
1995 Ed Ordynski (SA) Mark Stacey (SA) Mitsubishi Lancer RS-Ev2
1996 Michael Guest (NSW) Steve O'Brien-Pounde (NSW) Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 3
1997 Michael Guest (NSW) Mark Stacey (SA) Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 3
1998 Cody Crocker (VIC) Greg Foletta (VIC) Subaru Impreza WRX
1999 Cody Crocker (VIC) Greg Foletta (VIC) Subaru Impreza WRX
2000 Cody Crocker (VIC) Greg Foletta (VIC) Subaru Impreza WRX
2001 Cody Crocker (VIC) Greg Foletta (VIC) Subaru Impreza WRX
2002 Possum Bourne (NZ) Mark Stacey (QLD) Subaru Impreza WRX

Australian Manufacturers Champions[edit]

Year Company
1969 Ford Motor Co of Aust.
1970 Renault (Aust) Pty Ltd
1971 General Motors-Holden's
1972 General Motors-Holden's
1973 General Motors-Holden's
1974 General Motors-Holden's
1975 Nissan Motor Co (Aust)
1976 Nissan Motor Co (Aust)
1977 Nissan Motor Co (Aust)
1988 Mazda Motors Pty Ltd
1989 Lancia Spa
1990 Mitsubishi Motors Aust Ltd
1991 Daihatsu Australia Pty Ltd
1992 Daihatsu Australia Pty Ltd
1993 Daihatsu Australia Pty Ltd
1994 Daihatsu Australia Pty Ltd
1995 Daihatsu Australia Pty Ltd
1996 Daihatsu Australia Pty Ltd
1997 Mitsubishi Motors Aust Ltd
1998 Subaru Australia Pty Ltd
1999 Subaru Australia Pty Ltd
2000 Subaru Australia Pty Ltd
2001 Subaru Australia Pty Ltd
2002 Subaru Australia Pty Ltd
2003 Subaru Australia Pty Ltd
2004 Subaru Australia Pty Ltd
2005 Subaru Australia Pty Ltd
2006 Toyota Motor Corporation Australia Limited
2007 Toyota Motor Corporation Australia Limited
2012 Honda Motor Compamny Australia Limited
2013 Honda Motor Compamny Australia Limited

Australian Formula 2 Rally Champions[edit]

Year Driver Co-Driver Vehicle
1995 Bob Nicoli (WA) Claire Parker (WA) Daihatsu Charade GTi
1996 Ross Mackenzie (WA) Tony Brandon (ACT) Daihatsu Charade GTi
1997 Brett Middleton (NSW) Linda Long (NSW) Honda Civic
1998 Rick Bates (ACT) Jenny Brittan (NSW) Daihatsu Charade GTi
1999 Simon Evans (VIC) Sue Evans (VIC) Volkswagen Golf GTi
2000 Lee Peterson (TAS) Graham Legg-Stoker (VIC) Nissan Pulsar GTi
2001 Andrew Hannigan (WA) Duncan Jordan (WA) Daihatsu Charade GTi
2002 Warwick Rooklyn (NSW) Linda Long (NSW) Daihatsu Charade GTi

Australian F16 Rally Champions[edit]

Year Driver Co-Driver Vehicle
2003 Lee Peterson (TAS) Graham Legg-Stoker (VIC) Mitsubishi Mirage Cyborg
2004 Denise Collins (SA) Gerard McConkey (QLD) Honda Civic
2005 Leigh Garrioch (VIC) Ken Garrioch (VIC) Mitsubishi Mirage Cyborg
2006 Leigh Garrioch (VIC) Ken Garrioch (VIC) Mitsubishi Mirage Cyborg

External links[edit]