The Akademos was held on May 24-25
ARC Round 3 – 1975 MUCC Akademos
The 660 kilometre event started in Sale and ran north east up through Cullogen, Bruthen and Deptford Crossing, finishing at Bairnsdale. Dry weather was certainly a contrast to last year’s very wet Akademos and created extreme tyre wear, with a multitude of punctures being experienced by most of the field.
The Holden Dealer Team had upgraded from their hugely successful XU-1 to the bigger V8 engined Torana L34, debuting the new model in this 1975 Akademos Rally. Bigger and heavier, it was considered to need some sorting out, in order to be competitive on the gravel. However in Colin Bond’s hands, the new L34 finished in an impressive fourth place, earning 3 points on debut.
Bob Watson / Jeff Beaumont were running their Howard Marsden / Ford entered RS Escort, as a testing run for the upcoming Southern Cross Rally, and they finished a strong 4th overall. They put up a fastest stage time on the difficult 66 kilometre loop in the first Division.
Garry Harrowfield was having alternator problems, whilst Roger Bonhomme slipped of the road and lost 45 minutes with recovery.
But Datsuns seemed to be the most popular and their models fought for the victory in this year’s Akademos. Dunkerton / Large and McLeod / Mortimer were driving Z models, with Frank Kilfoyle and Geoff Boyd in a 180B SSS and George Fury and Monty Suffern in a 710 model. Only a point separated Dunkerton, McLeod and Kilfoyle going into the final long section.
Unfortunately Kilfoyle crashed off the road only a few kilometres from the end, whilst the other three Datsuns took honours, with a tie for first place after a furious battle.