1979 Otway Trial

The Otway Trial was held on April 7.

1979 VRC Round 2 – WDCC Otway Trial

Watson surprises in Otway!

Bob Watson, with Ian Pearson navigating won the Otway Trial , being the second round of this year’s Victorian Championship.

Directed by Jim Maude, this fully route charted event would be the first VRC event since the 1974 RACV 500 to be timed to the second.

The Otways was pretty rough in places, which suited Watson’s Peugeot 504. But the car also showed a great turn of speed, with its turbocharged engine.

From the start in Waurn Ponds, the field transported to Benwerrin for the first competitive just north of Lorne.

The Fitchers and the Browns were immediately quick, whilst John Armitage and Phil Rainer were forced to change a flat tyre. Greg Lee / Shane Blandford ran off into a stump and retired.

The rally continued down the Pipeline Road, then across the ridge of the Otway Ranges, and down into Wye River on the Great Ocean Road.

After a refuel at Lorne, crews climbed up past Erskine Falls, and on to service at Mt Sabine.

A loop around Aire Valley saw Swan quickest from Watson and Fitcher. Watson was quickest down Jackson’s Track, from Uttleymoore and Warwick Smith.

Ian Swan was in fine form, with Derek Rawson navigating. They would continue their battle with Chris and Simon Brown to near the end, until they got heavily bogged whilst trying to pass a badly parked tractor on a greasy farm track.

The Browns then retired after clipping a bank in the very tight Turtons Track, leaving Bob Watson and Ian Pearson leading from Jim Uttleymoore and Tony Bond, which was how they finished, with Smith / Paterson in third place.

Ian Swan, for his excellent but unlucky performance, earned the Director’s Award.

Bob Watson in the Peugeot 504 in action in the Begonia

Results and entry list

PlaceDriverNavigatorCarTime PenaltyGrade 2
1Bob WatsonIan PearsonPeugeot 50422:10
2Jim UttleymooreTony BondLancer22:56
3Warwick SmithPaul PatersonLancer24:36
4Alex FitcherJan FitcherDatsun 160026:181
5Peter EvansChris ManiatakisDatsun 160028:132
6Mick EllisJohn McKayDatsun 160028:403
7Colin SichlauDavid McKenzieFiat 12431:104
8Peter CorkranIan EllisLancer31:23
9David AdamsIan MorrisonLancer33:535
10John ArmitagePhil RainerDatsun 180B34:27
11Peter ThompsonIan McCallumDatsun 160036:526

Detailed results


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