Finke Desert Race

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Tatts Finke Desert Race
Finke Desert Race
Country Alice Springs, Northern Territory, Australia
Inaugural event 1974
Official Website http://www.finkedesertrace.com.au/

The Tatts Finke Desert Race, known as Australia's Fastest and Greatest Desert Race, is an off road, multi terrain two-day race for bikes, cars, buggies and quads through desert country from Alice Springs to the small Aputula (Finke) community. The race is held each year on the Queen’s Birthday long weekend in June. “Finke” as it is commonly known, is one of the biggest annual sporting events in the Northern Territory and has the reputation of being one of the most difficult offroad courses in one of the most remote places in the world. Finke is unique and the most fun you can have with a helmet on![1]

The Track[edit]

Encompassing about 229 km each way the Finke Desert Race is a gruelling and tough event. Travelling through many Properties on its way to end up crossing the Finke river just north of Aputula. The Track is divided into 5 sections:

  • Start/Finish Line to Deep Well (61 km)
  • Deep Well to Rodinga (31 km)
  • Rodinga to Bundooma (43 km)
  • Bundooma to Mt Squires (45 km)
  • Mt Squires to Finke (49 km)

History[edit]

There And Back[edit]

The race started in 1976 as a ‘there and back’ challenge for a group of local motorbike riders to race from Alice Springs to the Finke River and return. After the success of this initial ride, the Finke Desert Race was born and it has been held annually on the Queen’s Birthday long weekend ever since. The race is run along sections of what was the Old Ghan Railway service track adjacent to the railway line along a winding corrugated track, which snakes through typical outback terrain of red dirt, sand, spinifex, mulga and desert oaks. Even though the railway was realigned and rebuilt in the early 80’s, with the old tracks being pulled up, the race continues along its original course.

King Of The Desert[edit]

Whilst originally the Finke was only a bike race, its increasing popularity saw the inevitable introduction of cars and off road buggies in 1988. A fierce rivalry developed between the two and four wheelers, as the buggies were keen to claim the holy grail of the race outright winner or 'King of the Desert' as it is respectfully known. For 11 consecutive years the bikes were too quick for the cars despite the gap constantly narrowing. Finally in 1999, a buggy returned home first to claim the honour. With the bikes winning back the title in 2000 and 2001. From 2002 until 2004 the buggies held onto the 'King of the Desert' title. In 2005 the title was changed to see two 'Kings of the Desert', one for the cars and one for bikes, each picking up $10,000 for their effort. Although the bikes and cars no longer race against each other for the title, it is always interesting to see who completes the 460 km round trip quickest.

Hall of Fame[edit]

'2014 BIKES

00. Tyson (extreme) Collins suzuki LTR 450, Vic

1. Toby Price, KTM 500 EXC, NSW

2. David Walsh, Honda CRF450, NT

3. Ivan Long, KTM 500 EXC, SA

2014 CARS

1. Shannon & Ian Rentsch; Jimco Buggy, VIC

2. Jack Rhodes, David Pullino, Jimco Buggy, SA

3. Travis Robinson, Paul Currie, Jimco OBR, WA

2013 BIKES

1. Todd Smith, Honda CRF450R, NSW

2. Jake Smith, Honda CRF450R, NSW

3. Joshua Green, Yamaha YZF450, NSW

2013 CARS

1. Hayden Bentley, Racer Buggy, SA

2. Shannon Rentsch, Ian Rentsch, Jimco Buggy, VIC

3. Mark Burrows, Colin Hodge, MBR Jimco 2012, VIC

2012 BIKES

1. Toby Price, KTM 450SX-F, NSW

2. David Walsh, Honda CRF450R, NT

3. Todd Smith, Honda CRF450R, NSW

2012 CARS

1. Brad Gallard/Rick Geiser/Scott Modistach, Trophy Truck, SA

2. Matthew Coleman/Shawn Teagle, Alpha Ac07 Chev, SA

3. Beau Robinson/Ken Skinner, Trophy Truck, WA

2011 BIKES

1. Ben Grabahm, KTM 450SX-F SX-F ,NSW

2. Jarrod Bewley, KTM 450SX-F, NSW

3. Ryan Branford, Husaberg FE570, NT

2011 CARS

1. Greg Gartner/Jamie Jennings, Ford F150, SA

2. Andrew Kittle/Mathew Kittle, Jimco2000 Series Buggy, SA

3. Greg Hicks/Shane Braitling, Southern Cross Buggy, NT

2010 BIKES

1. Toby Price, KTM 450 SX-F, NSW

2. Todd Smith, KTM 530 EXC, NSW

3. Ryan Branford, Honda CRF450, NT

2010 CARS

1. David Fellows/Mark Bergamin, Jimco 2000 Series Buggy, SA

2. Bradley Gallard/Scott Modistach, Chev Geiser Bros Trophy Truck, SA

3. Daniel Auricht/Grant Connelly, Jimco Buggy, NT

2009 BIKES

1. Ben Grabham, KTM 505 XC-F, NSW

2. Brad Williscroft, KTM 505 XC-F, NSW

3. Chad Billett, Honda CRF450, SA

2009 CARS

1. David Fellows/Andrew Kittle, Jimco 2000 Series Buggy, SA

2. Mark Burrows/Colin Hodge, Jimco 2000 Series Buggy, VIC

3. Beau Robinson/Roy Lukies, Porter OBR Buggy, NSW

2008 BIKES

1. Ben Grabham, Honda CRF450R, NSW

2. Ryan Branford, Honda CRF450R, NT

3. Brad Williscroft, KTM 525 EXC, NSW

2008 CARS

1. David Fellows/Andrew Kittle/Jason Adami, Jimco 2000 Series Buggy, SA

2. Chris Coulthard/Robert Hawker/Daniel Bartels, Jimco 2000 Series Buggy, NT

3. Brad Prout, Jimco 2000 Series Buggy, NSW

2007 BIKES

1. Ben Grabham, Honda CRF450R, NSW

2. Ryan Branford, Honda CRF450R, NT

3. Jason Hill, Honda CRF450R, NT

2007 CARS

1. Hayden Bentley/Ben Chivell, Jimco Buggy, SA

2. Brad Prout, Jimco Buggy, NSW

3. Buddy Crowe/Kerry Crowe, Jimco Buggy, NSW

2006 BIKES

1. Ryan Branford, Honda CRF 450, NT

2. Brad Williscroft, KTM 525 EXC, NSW

3. Ben Grabham, Honda CRF450R, NSW

2006 CARS

1. Shannon Rentsch/Ian Rentsch, Chenowth Buggy 2000cc, Vic

2. Hayden Bently/Ben Chivell, Jimco Buggy 5700cc, SA

3. Terry Rose/ David Hartwig, Jimco Buggy, NSW

2005 BIKES

1. Jason Hill, Honda CRF 450, NT

2. Gavin Chapman, Yamaha YZ 450F, NT

3. Ben Brooks, Honda CRF 450, NT

2005 CARS

1. Shannon Rentsch/Ian Rentsch, Chenowth Buggy 2000cc, VIC

2. Mark Burrows/Mark Shannon, Jimco Buggy 2200cc Turbo, VIC

3. Hayden Bentley/Ben Chivell, Jimco Buggy 5700cc, SA

2004 BIKES

1. Stephen Greenfield, Honda CRF 450, NT

2. Gavin Chapman, Yamaha YZ 450F, NT

3. Jamie Cunningham, Honda CRF 450, NSW

2004 CARS

1. David Fellows/Tony Pinto, Jimco Buggy 2200cc, NT

2. Shannon Rentsch/Ian Rentsch, Chenowth Buggy 2000cc, VIC

3. Peter Kittle/Adam Ryan, Jimco Buggy 3000cc, NT

2003 BIKES

1. Darren Griffiths, KTM 540, WA

2. Mark Sladek, Husaberg 650, VIC

3. Rick Hall, Honda CR500E, NT

2003 CARS

1. Mark Burrows/Colin Hodge, MBR Jimco 2200cc Turbo, VIC

2. Hayden Tatnell, Chenowth 1600cc Turbo, Travellers TAS

3. Peter Kittle/Adam Ryan, Jimco Toyota 3000cc, NT

2002 BIKES

1. Rick Hall, Honda CR500, NT

2. Stephen Greenfield, Honda XR650, NT

3. Brad Williscroft, KTM 520SX, NSW

2002 CARS

1. Mark Burrows / Michael Shannon, MBR Jimco 2000cc Buggy, VIC

2. Peter Kittle / Adam Ryan, Jimco 3000cc Buggy, NT

3. Steven Burrows / Troy Kelly, MBR Cougar 1600cc Buggy, VIC

2001 BIKES

1. Michael Vroom, Honda CR500, NT

2. Mark Sladek, Honda CR500, VIC

3. Brad Williscroft, KTM 520SX, NSW

2001 CARS

1. David Fellows / Tony Pinto, Southern Cross 2500cc Buggy, NT

2. Bruce Garland / Harry Suzuki, Holden Jackeroo

3. Eric Scmid / Mike King, Volkswagen 2078cc Buggy, VIC

2000 BIKES

1. Stephen Greenfield, Honda CR500, NT

2. Rick Hall, Honda CR500, NT

3. Andy Haydon, KTM 520, SA

2000 CARS

1. Mark Burrows / Michael Shannon 2200cc Turbo Buggy, VIC

2. Paul Simpson, Jimco 3000cc V6 Buggy, VIC

3. Richard Bennett / Geoff Roe, 3000cc Holden Rodeo, SA

1999 BIKES

1. Rick Hall, Honda 500, NT

2. Andy Haydon, Husaberg 600, SA

3. Jason Hill, Honda 500, NT

1999 CARS

1. Mark Burrows / Michael Shannon, Cougar Buggie, VIC

2. David Fellows / Tony Pinto, Southern Cross Buggie, NT

3. Darren Wells, Chenowth Turbo Buggie, VIC

1998 BIKES

1. Stephen Greenfield, Honda 500, NT

2. Rick Hall, Honda 500, NT

3. Billy Hayes, Honda 500, NT

1998 CARS

1. Mark Burrows/ Michael Shannon, Cougar Buggy, VIC

2. Paul Simpson/Jimco Buggy, VIC

3. David Fellows/Tony Pinto, Southern Cross Buggy, NT

1997 BIKES

1. Stephen Greenfield, Honda 500, NT

2. Jason Hill, Honda 500, NT

3. Michael Vroom, Kawasaki 500, NT

1997 CARS

1. Paul Simpson, Jimco Buggy, VIC

2. Mark Burrows/Michael Shannon, Cougar Buggy, VIC

3. Locky Weir/Paddy Hall, Southern Cross Buggy, NT

1996 BIKES

1. Dan Ashcraft, Honda 500, USA

2. Stephen Greenfield, Honda 500, NT

3. Andy Haydon, Yamaha 250, SA

1996 CARS

1. Keith Poole/Peter Walker, Scorpion VW Buggy, SA

2. Mark Burrows/Michael Shannon, Cougar Buggy, VIC

3. Eric Schmid/Kathy Schmid, VW Silhouette, SA

1995 BIKES

1. Randall Gregory, Honda 500, NT

2. Darren Griffiths, KTM 550, NT

3. Stephen Greenfield, Honda 500, NT

1995 CARS

1. Bob Mowbray/Janette Mowbray, Buggy, NSW

2. Glen Owen/Brent Hill, Rivmasta Buggy, VIC

3. Terry Rose/D Schmidt, Raceco Buggy, NSW

1994 BIKES

1. Randall Gregory, Honda 500, NT

2. Alan Roe, Honda 500, NT

3. Stephen Greenfield, Honda 500, NT

1994 CARS

1. Keith Poole/Peter Walker, Buggy, SA

2. Doug McMillan, Raceco, NSW

3. John Hildebrand/Theo Van-Luenan, Buggy, NT

1993 BIKES

1. Randall Gregory, Honda 500, NT

2. Stephen Greenfield, Honda 500, NT

3. Craig Carmichael, Honda 250, NT

1993 CARS

1. Steven Graydon/Tony Graydon, Buggy, WA

2. Brian Robinson/Timothy Gilbertson, Buggy, WA

3. Wayne Russell/Glen Sheppard, Buggy, NT

1992 BIKES

1. Randall Gregory, Honda 500, NT

2. Darren Griffiths, Honda 500, NT

3. Phil Lovett, Husqvarna 610, NSW

1992 CARS

1. Greg Schlein/David Fellows, Buggy, NT

2. David Tobin/Neville Hennes, Buggy, NT

3. Howard Johnstone/Britt Johnstone, Buggy, VIC

1991 BIKES

1. Randall Gregory, Honda 500, NT

2. Graeme Baldwin, Honda 500, NSW

3. Cesare Del-Farra, KTM 500, VIC

1991 CARS

1. Keith Poole/Peter Walker, Buggy, SA

2. Trevor Growden/Trevor Growden Jnr, Buggy, SA

3. Gary Nicolle/Neil Shegog, Buggy, NT

1990 BIKES

1. Mark Winter, KTM 540, NT

2. Alan Roe, Honda 500, NT

3. Randall Gregory, Honda500, NT

1990 CARS

1. Gary Nicolle/Neil Shegog, Buggy, NT

2. Denis Pate/Tony White, Datsun, NT

3. Bruce Garland/Mal Crockenberg, Mitsubishi, NSW

1989 BIKES

1. Mark Winter, Honda 500, NT

2. Alan Roe, Honda 500, NT

3. Stephen Greenfield, Yamaha 250, NT

1989 CARS

1. Gary Nicolle/Jo Reed, Buggy, NT

2. Adrian Sgarbossa/Mal Monroe, Buggy, NT

3. Mike Paull/Kym Paull, Buggy, SA

1988 BIKES

1. Alan Roe, Honda 500, NT

2. Phil Lovett, KTM 495, NSW

3. Stephen Gall, Yamaha 490, NSW

1988 CARS

1. John Fidler/Peter Lewis, Corvette, NT

2. Phil Pittaway/Denis Pate, Datsun, NT

3. Allan Hoare/Jason Gregory, Mitsubishi, NT

1987 BIKES

   1. David Armstrong, Kawasaki 500, QLD
   2. Craig Dack, Honda 500, NSW
   3. Stephen Gall, Yamaha 500, NSW
   1985 BIKES
  1. Phil Lovett, KTM 495, NSW
  2. Geoff Curtis, Yamaha 500, NT
  3. Glen Bell, Yamaha 500, NSW
  1986 BIKES

1. Stephen Gall, Yamaha 500, NSW

2. Phil Lovett, KTM 495, NSW

3. Glen Bell, Yamaha 500, NSW

1984 BIKES

1. Peter Stayt, Yamaha 490, NT

2. Wayne Woodberry, Honda 500, NT

3. Alex Wood, Honda 500, SA

1983 BIKES

1. Stephen Gall, Yamaha 490, NSW

2. Dan Farrell, Yamaha 490, NT

3. Phil Lovett, KTM 490, NSW

1982 BIKES

1. Phil Lovett, KTM 495, NSW

2. Peter Stayt, Yamaha 465, NT

3. Kent Parkinson, Honda 250, NT

1981 BIKES

  1. Phil Lovett, KTM 390, NSW
  2. Greg Rhodes, Yamaha 465, NT
  3. Greg Lutze, Honda 500, SA
  1980 BIKES
  1. Geoff Curtis, Yamaha 400, NT
  2. Mark Hill, Suzuki 400, VIC
  3. Robert Honsa, Yamaha 400, NT
  1979 BIKES

1. Peter Stayt, Yamaha 500, NT

2. Peter Gunner, Yamaha 500, NT

3. Peter Kittle, Yamaha 400, NT

1978 BIKES

1. Geoff Curtis, Yamaha 500, NT

2. Hans Van Senten, Yamaha 500, NT

3. Peter Stayt, Suzuki 370, NT

1977 BIKES

1. Phil Stoker, Suzuki 370, NT

2. Hans Van Senten, Yamaha 500, NT

3. John Walker, Husqvarna 360, QLD

1976 BIKES

1. Geoff Curtis, Yamaha 250, NT

2. Hans Van Senten Yamaha 500, NT

3. Peter Stayt Honda 350, NT

See also[edit]

Australian Off Road Championship

References[edit]

External links[edit]