The Experts was held on 5 July.
VTC Round 2 – 1969 LCCA Experts Trial
Jeff Beaumont tells the story…
After a start to the year with frustrating mechanical issues, the ex London – Sydney Porsche 911 of Tony Roberts / Mike Osborne finally overcame their problems and took out the tough Experts Trial from a high class field.
The event started and finished at the Ballarat LCCA clubrooms, with Tony Roberts leading the field away, towards the scrub forest east of Raglan, where heavy rain had chewed up the rally route. Geelong entrants Warwick Henderson / Bruce Wookey stirred along their big V8 Monaro to clean sheet the first stage.
The remaining sections ran through Mt Cole, then to Amherst to a very expensive control near Talbot, where a gate carefully camouflaged by fallen trees forced many crews into a wrong direction.
Back at Ballarat, Roberts / Osborne and Watson / McAuliffe were tied on 15 points, followed by Peter De Vaux / Brian Amery ( Peugeot 404 ) and Jackman / Hartigan (Bellet) both on 34 and David Forster / Jeff Beaumont on 36 points lost.
The second stage circled to the north and east, to a refuel at Ballan. Robert’s Porsche and Janson’s R8 Gordini were trading fastest times.
A tight section down to Glenlyon caused drama for Tony Roberts when he found a tree partially blocking the road. The impact caused a flat tyre which was hastily changed. Then along came “tail out“ Janson, who promptly bogged whilst avoiding the tree, losing over 30 minutes getting out!
Watson was now the leader, narrowly, as the rally headed south through the Brisbane Ranges then around Steiglitz.
The Porsche was flying in the final stages, whilst Watson’s 16TS and the Datsun 1600 of John Roxburgh / Roger Bonhomme both lost time on the run back to Ballarat via Happy Valley.
Janson / Price were provisionally in third place but final results show them in sixth, for reasons unknown!