The Akademos Rally was held on May 29,
1971 ARC Round 3 – MUCC Akademos Rally
Jeff Beaumont tells the story ……
The 1971 Akademos, traditionally run by the Melbourne University Car Club, and directed by Geoff Sproat, started at Euroa, and attracted 70 entries.
Much of the 650 km route had received heavy rain in the week prior to the rally and intermittent showers persisted throughout, making the hilly roads very slippery indeed.
Early in the event, a long steep uphill climb created havoc, with a herd of cattle slowing down the cars as they attempted the climb. Only the first eight cars got through without problems.
Frank Kilfoyle, in his first drive for the Holden Dealer Team, put up an amazing performance in the big Monaro 350. Mal McPherson could barely believe it, when Kilf blasted past the more nimble Renault up a muddy climb.
But the other Renaults R8s were in trouble with Bob Watson having diff problems and Roger Bonhomme with an engine issue. Their team mates Mal McPherson and Jeff Beaumont continued on to finish in 5th place, after a few issues, and salvaging some Renault honour.
Hoddo was having electrical issues which slowed their progress, while Matt Philip’s flying little Colt flew off the road and heavily clobbered a tree.
Colin Bond was having a good run until the diff failed. His service crew changed the diff on the side of the road but his time loss was costly.
An amazing performance was being put up by young competitors John Wardill and John Hocking, who kept their Datsun 1600 out of trouble and stayed on the road to finish in an outstanding 2nd place.
A detailed report appeared in July Unicar (pages 5-10)
Some interesting snippets and quotes appeared in June Unicar (pages 9 & 10)