1979 Repco Reliability Trial - Division V (Melbourne to Adelaide)

The event began at midday Sunday August 5th, 1979, from the Melbourne Showgrounds. The first division designated V for Victoria, ran through to Adelaide by late Monday afternoon with a brief stop around midnight in Mount Gambier and a morning break of several hours in Renmark.

The route comprised 5 special stages totalling 146.8 km, 4 trial stages totalling 360.2 km and 15 transport stages totalling 1125.3 km for a total division distance of 1632.3 km of which 31% was competitive.

While the afternoon seeding stage was run in fine overcast weather, it rained heavily during the evening making the Creswick and Heywood stages treacherous. Having set the quickest time on the Seeding Stage, Geoff Portman in the privately entered “Shepparton” Stanza had first on the road ahead of Brock and Carr. Portman again set the quickest time at Creswick with Carr close behind. The leading crews cleaned all the remaining stages until the Kuitpo Special Stage near to Adelaide, where Brock was quickest but only 9 seconds ahead of Portman who would lead the event into Adelaide.

Conditions for the following cars on the run north from Mount Gambier to Renmark deteriorated quickly with both a treacherous unexpected muddy road at the end of a transport stage near Bordertown and then the deep sand of the Sunset Country taking between minutes and hours off later competitors. In retrospect, the first division had been pretty easy but it had sorted the serious competitors from the amateurs. It had revealed the organisers’ intentions – that there would be pressure all the way through the event and you could not even afford to relax on transport stages!

Melbourne to Tooborac (including the Seeding Stage)

V1 – Melbourne Transport

96.4 km in 1h 20m, First Car ETA 1:20 pm Sunday

A large crowd had gathered at the Melbourne Showgrounds to see the 167 cars depart at one minute intervals from 12.00 midday. They then travelled through Bulla, Romsey and Lancefield to Tooborac where cars were held at the sports field before heading out onto the seeding special stage at two minute intervals. Car numbers and therefore initial starting order had been determined by the organisers supposedly on the basis of experience and reputation but to sort this out more fairly, cars would in theory start the subsequent stages in order of the times achieved on the seeding special stage. In practice it was not possible to hold the entire field and so the maximum shift forward in the starting order was one hour or 30 places, given that cars were run at 2 minute intervals.

Edgar Herrmann and Dean Rainsford in the Porsche 911 are flagged off from Melbourne by then Premier Dick Hamer (Photo from ABC Documentary)

V2 – Maude’s Transport

5.5 km in 8m, First Car ETA 1:28 pm Sunday

This short transport took crews over to the start of the special stage on Majors Line. It was named after the late Jim Maude, proprietor of the Tooborac Store and a well regarded rally navigator and director. In fact Jim was largely responsible for the route of the first special stage. A handful of competitors lost time on this short transport stage, which seemed remarkable – perhaps they were unable to navigate or perhaps they were reticent to leave the bitumen highway. It is worth emphasising that time was lost on the Repco on both competitive and transport stages, and at the same rate, i.e. a minute late on a transport was the same penalty as a minute late on a competitive, unlike in modern special stage rallying where 10 seconds is lost for each minute late on a liaison section. One crew also incurred an early time penalty – time could be lost just as easily by failing to nominate your correct time when early, however as the event developed, many crews also realised that they could keep within their late time limit by deliberately booking in early in order to regain late time.

V3 – Tortoise and Hare Special Stage

48.34 km in 39m, First Car ETA 2:07 pm Sunday (map)

This stage was a mixture of fast gravel and tight goldfields tracks lined with stumps, as well as a few washways and creek crossings. You could not win the event here but you could certainly lose it.

Bond suffered a pucture and lost about 2 minutes. Carr also punctured near the end but still set the second quickest time. The organisers were confident that no-one would clean but in fact 3 cars did – Portman 32 seconds early, Carr 25 seconds early and Brock dead even. Fast Victorian, Mick Ellis, was next best down just 13 seconds from a lowly starting position of 93! Near the front, Blok retired in the big Falcon Ute with a broken rear axle, while Tholstrup’s Chevvy Pickup broke a differential (apparently they hit a stump while looking in the rear view mirror for Portman) but it was repaired and he continued to Mount Gambier after losing more than 3 hours. The Subaru of Koseki from Japan was 87th fastest revealing that the car 14 allotted to them by the organisers was a bad joke. Gil Davis had a problem with the 180B dropping more than 6 minutes. John Bryson damaged the suspension of the Escort when apparently the accelerator jammed. He and Sonja Cable-Cumming eventually extricated themselves from the stage after dropping over an hour. Many other lowly car numbers put in good times including Rowney (Car 41), Sutton (Car 42), Mulligan (Car 56), Miettunen (Car 58), Nalder (Car 81) and Mason (Car 88), to name a few. The organisers’ starting order had been shown to be a sham and the limit on the 30 positions forward movement after the seeding stage meant that some of these crews would still be behind some slower competitors.

Further down the field, while there were some solid times by some competitors, many were dropping between 10 and 25 minutes without even having any real problems. Certainly the last 50 or so cars would have be doing the stage partially or fully in darkness, with the last car starting the stage at 7 pm (sunset was about 5.30). Nonetheless, there were no serious hazards, such as bogs, to unduly delay crews, so it was apparent that dozens of entrants were simply way out of their depth and it would be a long night and subsequent two weeks for many of them. Some certainly had genuine problems with punctures and mechanical failures, with eight crews other than Tholstrup dropping between 50 minutes and 1 hour 40 minutes. Some would cut and run to Mount Gambier or to Renmark while others would start booking in early on transports in order to stay within the late time limit of 2 hours to Mount Gambier and 6 hours for Renmark. The Lunney Peugeot hit a tree and failed to complete the stage and would cut and run to Bordertown, only to get bogged and then cut and run to Renmark.

Fastest times:

  1. Portman clean (32 seconds early)
  2. Carr clean (25 seconds early)
  3. Brock clean (even)
  4. Ellis 0.13 *
  5. Cowan 0.28
  6. Rowney 0.38
  7. Sutton 1.05
  8. Mehta (Aaltonen) 1.20
  9. Ferguson (Bell) 1.34
  10. Fury 1.42
  11. Miettunen 2.01 *
  12. Mulligan 2.04
  13. Mason 2.22 *
  14. Bond 2.25
  15. Nalder (Richards) 2.25 *
  16. Stewart 2.33
  17. Barth 3.02
  18. Johnson 3.06
  19. Dunkerton 3.09
  20. Meehan 3.18
  21. Alexander 3.21 *
  22. Kaitler 3.23 *
  23. Hurrey 3.37 *
  24. Moloney 3.42 *
  25. Hilton 3.47
  26. Herrmann 3.49
  27. Warmbold 3.56
  28. Finlay 4.00
  29. Faulkner 4.01
  30. Mizel 4.02
  31. Jensen 4.03
  32. Jackson 4.03 *
  33. Bird 4.03 *
  34. Watson 4.11
  35. Lund 4.15
  36. Perkins 4.16
  37. McCubbin 4.23
  38. Hodgson 5.00
  39. Roberts 5.06
  40. Loader 5.29
  41. Stanley 5.31
  42. Murray (Gelignite Jack) 5.32
  43. Kahler 5.33
  44. Beveridge 5.44
Those marked with an asterisk (*) were unable to take their true starting position due to the limit of 30 positions forward movement in the starting order.
Henrik Blok had the undistinguished honour of being the first retirement, seen briefly here at Tooborac (Photo courtesy of Ray Berghouse, Chevron Publishing)
From the Canberra Times

V4 – Tooborac Shuttle Transport

6.3 km in 25m First Car ETA 2:32 pm Sunday, depart 4:00 pm

The short run back to the Tooborac sports field allowed some time to refuel before scores were tallied and a departure time allocated out of Tooborac. The first car departed Tooborac at 4.00 pm. Road order was meant to be as per the list of times for the seeding stage above except for those marked with an asterisk for whom the maximum 30 position gain would see them further down the field. For example, Ellis would have slotted into road position 42, Miettunen position 13 and Nalder position 32. However, there were some strange road positions near the front, perhaps because competitors did not front at the out control at their assigned time. Carr went out behind Brock while both Sutton and Stewart seemed to be slightly further back than intended.

Tooborac to Mount Gambier

During the first half of Sunday night crews travelled through Victoria to Mount Gambier just over the border into South Australia. Two special stages were conducted enroute, one just north of Ballarat and the second in the Mount Deception forest to the west of Heywood. Despite the somewhat damp conditions, these stages presented no insurmountable problems for most competitors and barely took any time from the leaders.

V6 – Ballarat Special Stage

19.3 km in 14m First Car ETA 6:44 pm Sunday (map)

This stage used all fairly fast good quality gravel forestry roads in the pine plantation and native forests to the south of Creswick, ending near White Swan Reservoir just to the north-east of Ballarat. Conditions were wet and somewhat slushy but nothing too untoward, although the occasional patch of fog made for some excitement.

Super fast Codes Forest Road today, as used on the Ballarat Special Stage (From Google Maps)

There were some questions raised about the timing at the end of this stage, with Brock’s navigator believing they were docked an extra minute, while a remarkable time by John Bryson in the Escort seems implausible given that they had had a big “off” on the seeding special stage. Nonetheless, the official scores showed only Portman, Carr, Bond and Bell under one minute late (also Bryson!) with most of the front runners losing between one and three minutes. Rowney was unexpectedly slow dropping several places but still holding fifth on the road. Despite the shortness of the stage, quick Mick Ellis must have caught and passed the car in front of him (Hurrey?). Further back in the field the times stretched out to 10 minutes late and beyond with the Hargrave Torana and Foden/Baker P76 losing almost an hour each. Hargrave would eventually cut and run directly to Adelaide.

Fastest times:

  1. Portman 0.14
  2. Carr 0.26
  3. Bond 0.50
  4. Bryson 0.57 (?)
  5. Ferguson (Bell?) 0.58
  6. Mehta (Aaltonen?) 1.13
  7. Brock 1.15
  8. Ellis 1.23
  9. Dunkerton 1.25
  10. Fury 1.26
  11. Perkins 1.36
  12. Cowan 2.05
  13. Barth 2.07
  14. Jackson 2.10
  15. Stewart 2.14
  16. Johnson 2.20
  17. Nalder 2.21
  18. Hodgson 2.23
  19. Mulligan 2.24
  20. Warmbold 2.26
  21. Sutton 2.33
  22. Colless 2.34
  23. Herrmann 2.39
  24. Davis 2.45
  25. Meehan 2.51
  26. Giddings 2.52
  27. Miettunen 2.53
  28. Alexander 2.53
  29. Mason 2.55
  30. Kahler 2.56
  31. Jensen 3.10
  32. Hilton 3.21
  33. Boaden 3.23
  34. McCubbin 3.24
  35. Taylor 3.24
  36. Watson 3.26
  37. Rowney 3.26
  38. Lund 3.26
  39. Stanley (Trevor) 3.30
  40. Beveridge 3.32
  41. Finlay 3.35
  42. Kaitler 3.36
  43. Faulkner, Roberts 3.37
  44. Corr 3.43
  45. Hurrey 3.48
  46. Lahiff 3.52
  47. Lloyd 3.53
  48. Quill 3.53
  49. Kuss 3.55
  50. Suth 3.58
  51. Potter 4.01
  52. Enter 4.03
  53. Loader 4.06
  54. Glennie 4.19
  55. Murray (Gelignite Jack) 4.21
  56. Leighton 4.28
  57. Coleman 4.36
  58. Caddey 4.39
  59. Fritter 4.42
  60. Moore 4.55
  61. Behret 4.58
  62. Mizel 5.02
  63. Bell 5.05
  64. Moloney 5.09
  65. Murray (Jack Milko) 5.16
  66. Tucker 5.18

V7 – Glenelg Transport

263 km in 3h First Car ETA 9:44 pm Sunday

A lengthy transport stage through Ballarat and Hamilton took crews to the start of a special stage west of Heywood. The rain continued.
Dunkerton had his first problem with the Volvo – just a loose shock absorber, easily fixed with no time lost. Others were not so fortunate. McArthur’s Falcon headed straight for Mount Gambier as did Bell’s old Peugeot. The Boaden Mazda RX4, Minett’s Datsun 1600, Hayden’s Mazda RX2 and Bolton’s old Dodge Kingsway all had problems losing around 30 minute each on this transport. Bolton would skip the next special, go to Mount Gambier and then head straight for Pinnaroo, while Minett and Hayden would take maximum (4 hour) penalties on the next special. The Parsons ‘husband and wife’ Mazda 323 headed straight for Adelaide, having had enough rallying for one day.

V8 – Heywood Special Stage

67.8 km in 41m First Car ETA 10:25 pm Sunday (Map)

The roads in the so-called Mount Deception State Forest (now the Cobboboonee National Park) are mostly fast, some with long straights punctuated by sharp bends. Conditions were wet and slushy in places which was challenging at fairly high speeds but the stage was always going to be cleanable by quick cars with confident drivers. This was further guaranteed when the clock at the end control was out by about 2 minutes.

The final corner of the stage on Heath Road (from Google Maps)

Nineteen cars cleaned the stage: Herrmann, Cowan, Mehta, Bond, Brock, Warmbold, Dunkerton, Carr, Ferguson, Portman, Stewart, Perkins, Sutton, Loader, Miettunen, Nalder (Richards), Ellis and Kaitler. Perkins probably passed Watson and Mizel, Nalder passed Lund and Alexander, Ellis probably also passed two cars (Taylor and Beveridge?), and surely Kaitler further down the field would have also passed several cars. There were plenty of cars losing just a minute or two but times stretched out down the field as the roads became more slushy and the drivers less experienced. Notable ‘slow’ times were Mulligan (6 seconds), Rowney (38 seconds), Davis (54 seconds), Fury and Barth (both one minute, perhaps a timing error?), Hodgson (2.58) while Watson also dropped almost 3 minutes (the Peugeot was not that quick in a straight line).

Jackson was particularly slow (9 minutes), while problems beset Finlay (36 minutes) and Caddey (43 minutes). The Falcon of Phillips lost its brakes, dropped an hour and decided to skip to Adelaide. Gawler and Kipling both lost over an hour while Minett, Caudle, Hayden and O’Donnell took maximum penalties, presumably not actually doing the stage but visiting the end control from the wrong direction and missing the passage control.

V9 – Mt Gambier Transport

59 km in 45m First Car ETA 11:10 pm Sunday (EST), ETD 11:30 (CST)

The transport along the Princes Highway took crews to Mount Gambier for a 50 minute break. Times were changed from EST to CST.
It was early days but the leader board at Mount Gambier was a follows. We need to go down to 50th place to include all thirteen cars that eventually completed the entire course, with Jackson lying 49th after the very slow time on the Heywood Special Stage.

  1. Portman/Thompson/Hammond (Stanza) 0.14
  2. Carr/Morrow/Gocentas (Cortina) 0.26
  3. Brock/Philip/Richards (Commodore) 1.15
  4. Ellis/Wall (Datsun 120Y) 1.36
  5. Ferguson/Bell/Boddy (Commodore) 2.32
  6. Cowan/Reddiex/Beaumont (Citron CX) 2.33
  7. Mehta/Aaltonen/Lake (Commodore) 2.33
  8. Bond/Riley/Dawson-Damer (Cortina) 3.15
  9. Sutton/Williams/Brock (Datsun 1600) 3.38
  10. Fury/Bonhomme/Suffern (Cortina) 4.08
  11. Dunkerton/McKay/Jones (Volvo 244) 4.34
  12. Mulligan/Byrn/Heaney (Escort) 4.34
  13. Nalder/Richards/Boyd (Celica) 4.46
  14. Stewart/Parry (Commodore) 4.47
  15. Miettunen/Morgan/Suominen (Volvo 244) 4.54
  16. Rowney/Wilson/Tyson (Datsun 180B) 5.42
  17. Perkins/Perkins (VW Beetle) 5.52
  18. Johnson/Vaderbyl (Volvo 242) 5.59
  19. Barth/Kushmaul (Porsche 924) 6.09
  20. Warmbold/Willemsen/Schleuter (Audi 100SE) 6.22
  21. Herrmann/Rainsford (Porsche 911) 6.28
  22. Kaitler/Kay/Harper (Datsun 1600) 6.59
  23. Meehan/Gifford/Gardiner (Monaro GTS) 7.29
  24. Mason/Hicks/Horley (Commodore) 7.54
  25. Jensen/Johnson/Wellington (Volvo 242) 7.59
  26. Hilton/Bourke/Pattenden (Celica) 8.02
  27. Faulkner/de Vaus/Bateson (Peugeot 504) 8.27
  28. Loader/Hill/Neale (Lancer) 9.35
  29. Hurrey/Geddes (Celica) 9.45
  30. Giddings/Jones/Seaman (Datsun 200B) 9.51
  31. Davis/Eather/Toner (Datsun 180B) 10.01
  32. Alexander/Sedgwick (Escort) 10.31
  33. Watson/Harrowfield (Peugeot 505 Diesel) 10.37
  34. McCubbin/Kelly/Guyatt (Monaro GTS) 10.44
  35. Quill/Quill/Ellis (Commodore) 11.07
  36. Stanley (Trevor)/Harrison (Volvo 244) 11.22
  37. Bird/McKinnon (Corolla) 11.23
  38. Lund/Elliott (Mazda RX7) 11.24
  39. Taylor/Hunt (Rover 3500) 11.49
  40. Colless/Johnston/McCoy (Datsun 1600) 11.53
  41. Beveridge/Heaney/Jarman (Volvo 244) 12.16
  42. Kuss/Wraight/Knight (Escort) 12.26
  43. Corr/McKimmie/Johansson (Saab) 12.27
  44. Mizel/Hall/Fricker/Mortimer (Chevy Blazer) 13.34
  45. Murray (‘Gelignite’ Jack)/D’Albora/Murray (Commodore) 14.20
  46. Hodgson/Houghton/Mitchell (Falcon) 14.21
  47. Enter/Enter (Galant) 14.27
  48. Moloney/Vitnel/Daley (Leyland P76) 14.27
  49. Jackson/West/Jackson (Commodore) 15.13
  50. Glennie/Shaw/Amos (Stanza) 16.01

A total of 148 cars had visited all controls to Mount Gambier, with 127 cars with losses under an hour. Four cars had taken maximum penalties on the Heywood special stage (which probably meant they did not do the stage). Nineteen cars had missed controls or retired from the event, and this was after only three competitive stages that presented few real challenges.

Mt Gambier to Renmark

While two of the three Sunday special stages had taken a few seconds off the leadings crews, they had basically presented few problems for the majority of competitors and in the absence of unforeseen touble, most time losses were in the minutes. After Mount Gambier, the run ostensibly up the Vic/SA border to Renmark would in some senses be more representative of the remainder of the event with some serious challenges in terms of the conditions, specifically mud and sand. While the leading crews would clean all these stages, time losses for many other crews started to run into hours rather than minutes, while the list of those missing controls grew considerably.

V10 – Myora Transport

20.8 km in 20m First Car ETA 11:50 pm Sunday

This short transport stage took crews straight out of Mount Gambier on the Glenelg Highway to the Vic/SA border.
Problems had emerged in Mount Gambier for the Escort of Ed Mulligan which needed repairs, losing 1 hour 42 minutes on the transport due to the late departure. That put them well down the field and not surprisingly, they subsequently lost an hour in the Bordertown bog. The Mazda R100 of Bill Johnston also had major dramas, departing Mount Gambier almost 3 hours late. They perservered to Bordertown but eventually skipped directly to Adelaide.

V11 – Introductory Trial Stage

13.6 km in 11m First Car ETA 12:01 am Monday (Map)

Stewart McLeod had always wanted to run all the way along the Vic/SA border and this stage was the start of that pattern. Unfortunately much of the border has no trafficable road so there were lots of deviations before crews reached Renmark. This short stage followed the border for 10 km before kinking back into SA at Mil Lel. The first 5 km was flat chat gravel, then 1 km of fairly solid sand, then came 4 km of grassy muddy lane which would present a few problems for the later cars. The final part was gravel again.

While 45 cars cleaned, as the later cars attempted the stage the conditions deteriorated on the grassy lane with cars becoming bogged for various periods of time. After about 100 cars had been through the time penaties started to rise and the final few cars were entrenched for more than an hour. Herdy’s Peugeot 504 took a maximum penalty of 4 hours and then skipped directly to Renmark.

V12 – Lynwood Transport

9.9 km in 9m First Car ETA 12:10 am Monday

This was another straightforward transport back into Victoria to the start of the next trial stage.
Charlie Lund dropped 4 minutes and some road position while the Wal Glass Torana, having lost almost an hour to Mil Lel, lost almost another hour and decided to cut and run to Adelaide.

V13  – Tarpeena Trial Stage

62.3 km in 50m First Car ETA 1:00 am Sunday (Map)

This stage was a continuation of Stewart McLeod’s attempt to follow the Vic/SA border. In practice it initially ran along fairly good sand based tracks in a pine plantation before going through a series of grids and gates across a paddock on a road used previously in the 1976 George Derrick Memorial Trial. It then joined and followed the border north from the Casterton-Penola Road, which is initially a straight fast road, but degenerates in several places into a narrow track before emerging onto a main road at Wrattonbully where the stage ended. This was really a very good trial stage with a mixture of good gravel, sand, twisty grassy lanes and some farm tracks. As such, it was far more representative of the remainder of the event, albeit being rather wet. Nonetheless, there were few, if any places where conditions would deteriorate such as to cause later cars to become bogged.

A section of the border track near the end of the stage (from Google Maps)

The leading group continued to fly, although Mehta dropped 3 with navigator Lake complaing that there was an incorrect instruction. They had probably been passed by team mate Ferguson and the Fury Cortina. Stewart dropped 2 after apparently nudging a fence post. Both Porsches had problems, Herrmann dropping 12 and Barth 23, dropping them now back to around twentieth on the road. Gary Meehan hit a fence post early on and dropped 23. Nalder passed McCubbin, Watson and Mizel on the stage to move up just behind Perkins and the two Porsches on the road. Mick Ellis also continued to pass cars as did the Quills, locals in car 109. The second Audi of Behret dropped more time (9 minutes) and some more road position.

Further back, a loss of 30 minutes didn’t look too bad but some struck trouble with 17 cars losing more than an hour and five skipping to the end of stage, thus taking the maximum 4 hour penalty. The Kuss Escort, well placed into Mount Gambier, struck problems and skipped to Bordertown. The Baumgartner Gemini retired when navigator Cyril Ostler broke his leg when he reportedly fell in a hole when opening a gate. The Cleworth Mini broke a transmission, changed it on the roadside (which is difficult in a Mini!) only to find a tooth still in there so they went to Mildura to change the engine and head directly to Adelaide, but then the gear box failed again so they had to replace it again in Adelaide. They eventually caught up with the rally again at Broken Hill!

Best times:

  • Cowan, Bond, Brock, Carr, Fury, Ferguson and Portman clean
  • Dunkerton and Sutton 1
  • Warmbold Stewart, Jensen, Perkins, Hodgson, Rowney, Miettunen and Ellis 2
  • Mehta, Mulligan, Faulkner, Nalder and Quill 3
  • Johnson and Loader 4
  • McCubbin, Lund and Alexander 5
  • Giddings 6
  • Colless, Mason, Lahiff 7
  • Davis, Watson, Roberts, Finlay, Leighton, Clarke 8
  • Behret 9
  • Bird, Harris, Kaitler 10
  • Taylor, Glennie, Coleman 11
  • Herrmann, Hilton, Stanle, Koseki 12
  • Jackson, Fritter, Moloney, Madgwick 13
  • Lockhart 15
  • Murray (Jack Milko) 16
  • Beveridge 17
  • Potter, Clyborne, Wallis, McArthur 18
  • Kahler, Enter, CLeaves, Feizaks 19
  • Murray (Gelignite Jack), Lloyd, Foden, Caddey 20

V14 – Wrattonbully Transport

105.7 km in 1h 4m First Car ETA 2:04 am Monday

The run up to just outside Bordertown was always going to be tight with a 100 km/h average set. In fact it used a mixture of single track bitumen, fast gravel/dirt and a one section of grassy lane. It really shouldn’t have been called a transport. The real problem arose on a dirt shire road near the end of the stage on which roadworks were being done and it was just glug. The road had quite a high crown and if you slipped off the top you just went down into the drains along each side. The only sensible approach was to go very slowly and avoid slipping off the crown. The edge of the road was so soft that it was possible to get very bogged, which many people did. One can only imagine what the Bordertown Shire Engineer thought when he saw the road the next day!

The first few cars had no real problems getting through although one of the challenges for many competitors is that because it was a designated a transport, the lead drivers were not at the wheel and in some cases the navigator was driving. Of course many navigators were very accomplished drivers in their own right, but some were not. Jim Reddiex in the Cowan Citroen caught the Carr Cortina which was perhaps being driven by Dave Morrow. The Citroen was probably the right car for such conditions with its front wheel drive whereas the Cortina was slewing from side to side. Cowan asked Reddiex whether he was going to pass but it would have been virtually impossible. Both cars made it on time, as did most of the first ten cars, except for Rowney who dropped 2 minutes.


The morning after, Photo: Graham Wallis
The O'Shanesy Fiat stranded in the Bordertown bog, Photo: Ray Berghouse, Chevron Publishing

Then it started to get a bit tricky with the clay road surface being churned into extremely slippery mud. Fury (perhaps Bonhomme driving?) was the first to strike trouble, sliding into the gutter and becoming bogged, but they got off lightly losing only 16. Dunkerton (perhaps not driving?) lost 7 minutes, probably tippy toeing through to not get bogged. Miettunen’s Volvo lost 17 minutes whereas Barth got the Porsche 924 through unscathed and with no time lost, but teammate Herrmann had the 911 well off the road and deeply bogged, having perhaps attacked the road a bit too quickly. They ended up losing 46 minutes. Jackson had the Commodore stuck but not too badly and lost 28 minutes. Hilton’s Celica became stuck briefly but he left his crew to walk out after being too scared to stop. He had to wait for them at the end of the bog and lost 38 minutes. The Nalder Celica (with Boyd driving) followed Hilton through but the crew rode on the back. They lost 14 minutes. Behind then, Hodgson lost 23 after navigator Mike Mitchell found a way around the bog, while Alexander had a reasonable run dropping only 9 minutes.
After about twenty cars had been through it was becoming really treacherous. Watson had the Peugeot stuck losing 54 minutes, McCubbin dropped 29 and the Lund RX7 was 58 minutes late. Mizel’s Chevvy Blazer was next along and lost almost 2 hours, but they reportedly ran out of petrol and a crew member had to walk to get more. Behret’s Audi lost almost 2 hours bogged. What happened to the Gil Davis 180B remains a bit of a mystery as the results show an unlikely clean sheet but the division total suggest they lost almost an hour. Much further down the field, the HR Holden of Lahiff also showed an unlikely cleansheet but the division total suggests that perhaps they lost 23 minutes.

As the night wore on, the road easement south of Bordertown became filled with cars bogged up to their eyeballs and time losses started to run into hours. Some crews were not actually bogged but were held up for long periods by other bogged cars. Others left the road and took to paddocks to try to avoid the bog, but this was usually futile. The great run of Mick Ellis came to an end when he lost an hour and he should never have been so far down the field. Similarly the good run of the Giddings 200B came to an end with almost 2 hours lost and they subsequently short cut to Adelaide. An enterprising local farmer started to make quite a bit of cash by pulling people out with his tractor. The all-girl O’Shanesy Fiat was inextricably bogged but when Tholstrup came long in his Chevvy Pickup he pulled them out but they still cut and ran to Adelaide. By dawn there were still cars bogged and a local farmer with a huge tractor was making a small fortune towing cars through. A total of 34 cars would either take the 4 hour maximum penalty or miss the end control altogether. Many were either out of late time or out of energy or both, skipping directly to either Renmark or Adelaide. These included the Fullagher family of four in the Monaro, who with little or no rallying experience, must have been quite shell shocked.

It is fair to say that this stage was “the” most critical stage of the division, and a nominated transport stage at that! For many of the leading crews, the time lost here was the bulk of their loss for the entire division and the outright placing at Adelaide were mostly dependent upon how much time was lost at Bordertown. Some quite fancied crews lost so much time that it literally ruined their event as they were never able to recover road position to get back into the running for outright positions. Those who spent hours bogged at Bordertown in many cases then had to skip controls and that meant the effective end of any chance to place well overall. It remains a mystery as to why the organisers allowed this to happen. Most likely the road was just fine when surveyed many months earlier and in all probability no-one even travelled along it in front of the field, or if they did, they perhaps lacked the experience to see that this was going to be such a catastrophe!

V15 – Bordertown Service Transport

94.5 km in 1h 15m First Car ETA 3:19 am Monday
modified to
140 km in 2h 30m First Car ETA 4:34 am Monday

The many crews that had been bogged before Bordertown slowly emerged, licking their wounds and trying to clear the great clumps of sticky mud from the wheel arches of their cars. The single hose at the servo was in great demand! Others continued to Pinnaroo before embarking on the cleaning job, while others took the opportunity to grab some food and coffee. Although the transport was very liberal on time so that the event would be back on schedule at Pinnaroo, some crews lost time as they worked to get their cars back into running condition.

The Bordertown Servo next morning, photo: Graham Wallis

V16 – Moonlight Mud Trial Stage (cancelled)

120.4 km in 1h 15m First Car ETA 4:34 am Monday (Map)

It was not much of a surprise that at Bordertown crews were instructed to proceed directly to Pinnaroo, with the Moonlight Mud Trial Stage (V16) through the Big Desert being cancelled due to the wet conditions. It was almost certainly not the organisers’ concern for competitors but that the local shire would have withdrawn approval to use the road. The stage had previously been used in the 1970 Ampol Trial and it was sand that had presented the challenges then.

V17 – Panitya Transport

5.2 km in 20m First Car ETA 4:54 am Monday

This short 5 km transport took crews from where the deleted Big Desert stage would have finished, across the Mallee Highway and up the border track a few kms past a farm house. It included 15 minutes for service but most crews had taken service in Pinnaroo on the previous transport. Thus, it was an opportunity for later crews to regain some late running time by booking in early. Beveridge and Minett skipped the control and headed straight to the end, taking a wrong direction, perhaps because they were out of late time limit at Control V17 (an additional 2 hours late time was available at Control V18).

V18 – Mallee Root Trial Stage

139 km in 2h 20m First Car ETA 7:14 am Monday (Map)

Again, this was Stewart McLeod’s attempt to follow the Vic/SA border, which the stage mostly did but for two diversions into Victoria, where there is no trafficable border track! After the first diversion a passage control ensured crews returned to the border. Much of the border track and other roads in the Sunset Country are quite sandy and with such a large field of cars, there was always going to be some mayhem. It remains something of a mystery why the organisers set such a slow average speed of only 60 km/h which meant that the fastest cars were up to half an hour early and 26 cars cleaned. Why not simply provide greater late time, as there was an adequate hold in Renmark to allow the field to regroup? Additionally, the organisers set a maximum time penalty on the stage of 1 hour, although missing the passage control and/or entering the end control from the wrong direction would still gain the 4 hours maximum penalty.
The first group of cars completed this stage in darkness with the first car arriving at the end control on the Vic/SA border east of Renmark at dawn (7 am) Monday morning. The sandy tracks were not too bad given the damp conditions but there were several dunes to be climbed, especially on the second diversion into Victoria. Among the leaders, Cowan discovered here that the front wheel drive Citroen won’t climb sand dunes and he lost about 22 minutes. The narrow tracks were such that a bogged car was difficult to pass and so following cars mostly had to wait, but Cowan was certainly passed by quite a few cars, including Perkins who took to the scrub in his modified VW. Warmbold faced similar problems in the front wheel drive Audi and dropped 21 minutes.
Further back the conditions started to deteriorate with deep ruts and horribly corrugated sandy tracks that would shake a car apart. After about 25 cars had been through most cars would require the assistance of 4WD vehicles or other locals to tow them through the worst stretches. At least it was daylight for them, and indeed the rain had stopped as well, which always raises spirits, even when you are bogged! In the end about 80 cars completed the stage with 17 cars taking the 1 hour maximum penalty. Quite a lot of cars short cut the section either missing the passage control and/or entering the end control from the wrong direction.

Times under the 1 hour maximum:

  • Herrmann, Mehta, Bond, Brock, Dunkerton, Barth, Carr, Mizel, Fury, Ferguson, Portman, Davis, Jensen, Perkins, Mulligan, Johnson, Rowney, Sutton, Hilton, Loader, Faulkner, Milko Murray, Walsh, Nalder, Mason, Richardson clean
  • Hodgson and Barth 4
  • Ellis 5
  • Watson 6
  • Stewart 8
  • Colless, Hurrey 10
  • Gelignite Jack Murray 11
  • Roberts 13
  • Tholstrup 14
  • Jackson 18
  • Warmbold, McCubbin 21
  • Cowan 22
  • Leighton 23
  • Enter, Travis 26
  • Larkin 29
  • Moloney 32
  • Tucker 33
  • Suth 35
  • Glennie 36
  • Lund 38
  • Penny, Glover 39
  • Quill, Ingerson 43
  • Sheridan 44
  • Taylor 48
  • Clarke 50
  • Lloyd 53
  • Meehan 54
  • Kuss 57
  • Miettunen, Foden, Corr 58
  • Nicholson 59

V19 – Renmark Transport

26.6 km in 25m First Car ETA 7:39 am Monday, ETD 11:00 am

This was a straightforward run into Renmark where there was a scheduled 3 hour “breakfast” break with the first car not departing until 11.00 am.

The run from Mount Gambier had been a rude awakening for many competitors but sadly, road position had played a big part in the outcome with later runners facing badly deteriorated road conditions. It also seemed perverse that the results to this point had been so dependent upon crews’ fortunes on what was billed as a transport stage!

The top few positions had not changed since Mount Gambier but certainly Cowan had dropped back and Ellis was largely out of contention. Times under 2 hours lost were:

  1. Portman/Thompson/Hammond (Stanza) 0.14
  2. Carr/Morrow/Gocentas (Cortina) 0.26
  3. Brock/Philip/Richards (Commodore) 1.15
  4. Ferguson/Bell/Boddy (Commodore) 2.32
  5. Bond/Riley/Dawson-Damer (Cortina) 3.15
  6. Sutton/Williams/Brock (Datsun 1600) 4.38
  7. Mehta/Aaltonen/Lake (Commodore) 5.33
  8. Perkins/Perkins (VW Beetle) 9.52
  9. Johnson/Vaderbyl (Volvo 242) 9.59
  10. Rowney/Wilson/Tyson (Datsun 180B) 10.42
  11. Dunkerton/McKay/Jones (Volvo 244) 13.34
  12. Stewart/Parry (Commodore) 14.47
  13. Jensen/Johnson/Wellington (Volvo 242) 18.59
  14. Fury/Bonhomme/Suffern (Cortina) 21.08
  15. Nalder/Richards/Boyd (Celica) 21.46
  16. Cowan/Reddiex/Beaumont (Citron CX) 24.33
  17. Warmbold/Willemsen/Schleuter (Audi 100SE) 30.22
  18. Mason/Hicks/Horley (Commodre) 31.54
  19. Barth/Kushmaul (Porsche 924) 33.09
  20. Hodgson/Houghton/Mitchell (Falcon) 43.21
  21. Hilton/Bourke/Pattenden (Celica) 58.02
  22. Loader/Hill/Neale (Lancer) 59.35
  23. Hurrey/Geddes (Celica) 1.02.45 (some doubt about score)
  24. McCubbin/Kelly/Guyatt (Monaro GTS) 1.05.44
  25. Herrmann/Rainsford (Porsche 911) 1.08.28
  26. Faulkner/de Vaus/Bateson (Peugeot 504) 1.10.27
  27. Ellis/Wall (Datsun 120Y) 1.12.36
  28. Jackson/West/Jackson (Commodore) 1.14.13
  29. Moloney/Vitnel/Daley (Leyland P76) 1.14.27
  30. Leighton/Mason/Cohn (Datsun 1600) 1.14.51
  31. Davis/Eather/Toner (Datsun 180B) 1.17.01 (some doubt about score)
  32. Watson/Harrowfield (Peugeot 505 Diesel) 1.18.37
  33. Meehan/Gifford/Gardiner (Monaro GTS) 1.28.29
  34. Quill/Quill/Ellis (Commodore) 1.34.07
  35. Lahiff/Beath/Clarke (HR Holden) 1.34.21 (possibly 23 minutes more)
  36. Glennie/Shaw/Amos (Stanza) 1.40.01
  37. Roberts/Waterson/Carrol (Commodore) 1.56.34
  38. Colless/Johnston/McCoy (Datsun 1600) 1.58.53
A total of 92 cars had visited all controls to Renmark but as many as twenty of them had not actually covered the entire route, either missing passage controls or entering controls from the wrong direction. So the run up from Mount Gambier had inflicted carnage on the field with about sixty cars failing to complete the route!

Renmark to Adelaide

Monday was fine and warm. The rain was gone and would not be seen again until late in the event.

The afternoon run across to Adelaide promised to be much more relaxed than the previous night’s dramas, and so it was for the majority of crews. All the leading cars lost small amounts of time on the special stage south of Adelaide and perhaps the only source of anxiety for most was the ridiculously tight time on the transport into Adelaide. 

V20 – Kingston Transport

45.1 km in 45m First Car ETA 11:45 am Monday

This was a leisurely drive through Berri and the Riverland orchards and vineyards to just west of Kingston. The day was now fine and sunny and certainly the leading crews were looking forward to an easy run into Adelaide. A handful of crews, most likely as a result of sheer exhaustion, decided to skip straight to Adelaide missing this and the subsequent three controls.

Crews waiting to start the Murray Flats trial stage at Kingston Hilton's car left, behind the Nalder Celica, Warmbold's Audi further in front, Photo: Ian Richards

V21 – Murray Flats Trial Stage

145.3 km in 1h 30m First Car ETA 1:15 pm Monday (Map)

This stage using a mixture of gravel roads and sandy/rocky laneways was a fairly pointless exercise and it was obvious that no-one was going to lose much time unless they did something stupid. There were a few tricky narrow tracks with rocks and washaways but no need to be pushing hard.

A turn right onto this grotty track was a minor challenge (from Google Maps)

All the leading cars cleaned and in fact 41 cars lost no time. However, the stage was not without some drama. The distributor on Carr’s Cortina worked loose and needed quick repairs while Dunkerton’s Volvo had a problem with the diff, apparently the bolts working loose and wearing a hole in the housing. They both limped on without any loss of time on this easy stage.
Further back in the field times were slower and losses ranged from a few minutes up to a couple of hours. There were 36 cars that lost between 10 minutes and an hour, so many that it is difficult to conclude that they all had mechanical problems and perhaps they were simply exhausted and slow. Alternatively, perhaps there were a couple of sandy stretches that caused problems for later cars. The battling Murray Carter dropped more than an hour in the Falcon, while George Harris in the Citroen lost an hour and a half. The Cuthell Torana, Sparkes Fairmont and Bolton Dodge Kingsway were all very late and skipped to Adelaide. The Farmer P76 and the Stockley Porsche 911 scored maximum 4 hour penalties, presumably having major problems or having simply decided to skip to the end of the stage.

V22 – Kuitpo Transport

86.5 km in 1h 10m First Car ETA 2:25 am Monday, ETD 3:00 pm

This transport ran from Murray Bridge across through Strathalbyn to the edge of the Kuitpo Forest. There was a hold at the end with the first car starting the Kuitpo Special Stage at 3.00 pm Monday afternoon. At the front, Carr needed service time to deal with the loose distributor and also a loose rear shock absorber which apparently shook the rear so badly as to pop the rear windscreen from its seal. The Cortina lost 14 minutes which dropped them from second to tenth. A number of other crews lost time on what was an easy transport, presumably needing service time, while large time losses befell the Ruyter Moke (55 minutes), the Macarther Falcon (1 hour) and the Ohta Toyota (1 hour 42 minutes). The Ellis/Wall Datsun struck trouble after their early quick times and cut directly to Adelaide.

V23 – Adelaide Special Stage

11.4 km in 7m First Car ETA 3:07 pm Monday (Map)

The short special stage through the Kuipto pine plantation was on reasonably good forest roads and included plenty of turns (32 instructions). It basically ran across the plantation from east to west to a turn hard right at a spectator point, then back across to the east side before heading to the finish on the west side again. Quite a few spectators were at the spectator point which also had a passage control. Conditions were reasonable although it was certainly damp and the roads may have cut up a bit for later cars.

None of the leading cars had any problems although Carr was somewhat slow with the loose shocker, Dunkerton was limping through with the leaking diff in the Volvo dropping about 4 minutes more than a good time, and the Davis 180B was also quite slow. Mulligan stalled at the spectator point and was unable to restart the Escort, however the problems were more serious and they were unable to complete the stage at all. They limped into Adelaide but their rally was effectively finished.

As night fell, the remainder of the tired field came through this dinky little stage which should not have presented any real challenges. Yet the times stretched out more and more as the relative inexperience of so many crews was evident. Although 108 cars completed the stage, only 79 had a time under 10 minutes which equated to an average speed of 40 km/h. Those with large time losses included the Jones Riley (45 minutes), Heaton’s HJ Holden (50 minutes), the Barnes Hillman (57 minutes), the Walsh ‘Grey Ghost’ (1 hour 3 minutes), Pittaway’s Ford Ute (1 hour 18 minutes) and Madgwick’s F100 (1 hour 40 minutes).

Bond about to start the Kuitpo Special Stage, photo: Ian Richards
Ed Mulligan's run comes to an early end in Kuitpo Forest, Photo: Ray Berghouse, Chevron Publishing

Fastest times:

  • Brock 2.30
  • Mehta (Aaltonen?) and Portman 2.39
  • Ferguson (Bell) 2.46
  • Perkins 2.53
  • Fury 3.07
  • Bond 3.08
  • Sutton 3.12
  • Rowney 3.17
  • Carr 3.18
  • Cowan and Quill 3.30
  • Stewart 3.41
  • Jackson 3.44
  • Herrmann 3.45
  • Miettunen 3.48
  • Nalder 3.52
  • Warmbold 3.53
  • Barth 3.59
  • Loader 4.03
  • Taylor and Hilton 4.05
  • Hodgson 4.07
  • Faulkner 4.08
  • Mason 4.19
  • Ohta 4.24
  • Hurrey 4.28
  • Lund 4.32
  • Moloney and Colless 4.33
  • Beveridge 4.38
  • Glennie 4.44
  • Jensen 4.47
  • Davis 4.53
  • Lloyd 4.57
  • Roberts 4.59
  • Leighton 5.01
  • Tholstrup 5.07
  • Watson 5.12
  • Sawyer 5.18
  • Mizel 5.24
  • Murray (Jack Milko) 5.34
  • Meehan 5.38
  • Finlay 5.40
  • Murray (Gelignite Jack) 5.52
  • Neislon 5.54
  • Boaden 5.55
  • Kuss 5.56
  • McCubbin 6.01

V23 – Adelaide Breather Transport

48 km in 53m First Car ETA 4:00 pm Monday

It was obvious that this transport into the heart of Adelaide was going to be tight. The early parts were on somewhat twisty roads in the Lofty Ranges while the latter parts were mixing it with peak hour traffic. Many cars were late but in the end the organisers deleted all late penalties. Cars were scrutineered and then impounded for the overnight stop.

While the first cars arrived on time from 4.00 pm, it is worth remembering that with six hours of late running time and the original field being spread out over five and a half hours (although holds at Renmark and Kuitpo may have compressed the field somewhat) that the last cars were probably coming into Adelaide around 3 am Tuesday morning, not long before the first of the leaders were being released from impound for the division to Perth!

Division Results

While the results show 82 cars were credited with visiting all controls, only about 70 had done the entire course to Adelaide with many taking a wrong direction on the end of the Sunset Country stage and also missing the passage control. Several cars had also systematically visited all controls but some from the wrong direction, simply not completing some stages at all. Only 20 cars lost under an hour and an additional 13 or 14 cars under 2 hours. 

From the Canberra Times

The scores of those who visited all major controls were:

  1. Portman/Thompson/Hammond (Stanza) 2.53
  2. Brock/Philip/Richards (Commodore) 3.45
  3. Ferguson/Bell/Boddy (Commodore) 5.18
  4. Bond/Riley/Dawson-Damer (Cortina) 6.23
  5. Sutton/Williams/Brock (Datsun 1600) 7.50
  6. Mehta/Aaltonen/Lake (Commodore) 8.12
  7. Perkins/Perkins (VW Beetle) 12.45
  8. Johnson/Vaderbyl (Volvo 242) 14.00
  9. Rowney/Wilson/Tyson (Datsun 180B) 17.39 (Results sum to 17.59)
  10. Carr/Morrow/Gocentas (Cortina) 17.44
  11. Stewart/Parry (Commodore) 18.28
  12. Dunkerton/McKay/Jones (Volvo 244) 21.47
  13. Jensen/Johnson/Wellington (Volvo 242) 23.46
  14. Fury/Bonhomme/Suffern (Cortina) 24.15
  15. Nalder/Richards/Boyd (Celica) 25.38
  16. Cowan/Reddiex/Beaumont (Citron CX) 28.03
  17. Warmbold/Willemsen/Schleuter (Audi 100SE) 34.15
  18. Mason/Hicks/Horley (Commodore) 36.13
  19. Barth/Kushmaul (Porsche 924) 37.08 (Results sum to 37.10)
  20. Hodgson/Houghton/Mitchell (Falcon) 47.28
  21. Hilton/Bourke/Pattenden (Celica) 1.02.07
  22. Loader/Hill/Neale (Lancer) 1.03.38
  23. Hurrey/Geddes (Celica) 1.07.13 (Results sum to 3.37.13, doubtful 2.5 hour loss at Bordertown)
  24. McCubbin/Kelly/Guyatt (Monaro GTS) 1.11.45
  25. Herrmann/Rainsford (Porsche 911) 1.12.13
  26. Faulkner/de Vaus/Bateson (Peugeot 504) 1.14.35
  27. Moloney/Vitnel/Daley (Leyland P76) 1.19.00
  28. Davis/Eather/Toner (Datsun 180B) 1.21.54 (Results sum to 22.54 but appears to omit a significant time loss at Bordertown)
  29. Watson/Harrowfield (Peugeot 505 Diesel) 1.28.49
  30. Jackson/West/Jackson (Commodore) 1.34.06 (Results sum to 1.42.57)
  31. Meehan/Gifford/Gardiner (Monaro GTS) 1.35.18 (Results sum to 2.45.07)
  32. Quill/Quill/Ellis (Commodore) 1.37.37
  33. Leighton/Mason/Cohn (Datsun 1600) 1:37:52
  34. Glennie/Shaw/Amos (Stanza) 1.44.45
  35. Roberts/Waterson/Carrol (Commodore) 2.01.33
  36. Colless/Johnston/McCoy (Datsun 1600) 2.04.26
  37. Lockhart/Dunstan/Finlayson (Commodore) 2.10.04 (Results sum to 3.53.04)
  38. Lund/Elliott (Mazda RX7) 2.11.06 (Results sum to 2.10.56)
  39. Murray (Jack ‘Milko’)/Myers (Peugeot 504) 2.28.06
  40. Enter/Enter (Galant) 2.29.07
  41. Lahiff/Beath/Clarke (HR Holden) 2.30.29 (Results sum to 2.17.29, probably 23 minute loss at Bordertown not shown)
  42. Mizel/Hall/Fricker/Mortimer (Chevy Blazer) 2.33.58
  43. Sheridan/Reid (Datsun 1600) 2.37.02
  44. Lloyd/Crockenberg/Dick (Colt) 2.37.51
  45. Miettunen/Morgan/Suominen (Volvo 244) 2.39.42
  46. Murray (‘Gelignite’ Jack)/D’Albora/Murray (Commodore) 2.40.12
  47. Clarke/Davis/Burge (Datsun 180B) 2.44.32
  48. Stanley (Eric)/Manning/Burr (VW) 2.46.52
  49. Lance/Craft/Robinson (Commodore) 2.51.34 (Results sum to 2.47.44)
  50. Taylor/Hunt (Rover 3500) 2.50.54
  51. Penny/Kennard/Brown (LH Torana) 2.57.00
  52. Bennett/Gleeson/Ogilvie (EH Holden) 3.00.33 (Results sum to 5.16.15)
  53. Glover/Burke/Hather (VW) 3.02.39
  54. Tattingham/Geue/Kemp (EH Holden) 3.09.09
  55. Potter/Bain (Mazda RX3) 3.19.38
  56. Behret/Schmidt/Schmidt (Audi 100SE) 3.21.59
  57. Suth/Gros/Suth (VW) 3.25.01
  58. Tucker/Maidment/Finch (LH Torana) 3.40.42
  59. Koseki/Takaoka (Subaru Leone) 3.52.04
  60. Pittaway/Boston (XY Ford Ute) 4.06.42
  61. Corr/McKimmie/Johansson (Saab) 4.07.09
  62. Harris/Ross/Boyd (Citroen CX) 4.16.25
  63. Richardson/Daniel/Fullerton (XD Falcon) 4.36.02 (missed a passage control)
  64. Foden/Baker/Young (Leyland P76) 4.49.29 (Results sum to 4.50.29)
  65. Finlay/Sullivan/McLeod (Commodore) 5.11.15
  66. Nicholson/Crawford (Lancer) 6.00.23
  67. Kaitler/Kay/Harper (Datsun 1600) 6.12.43 (missed a passage control)
  68. Walsh/Whitby/Wunderlich (Ford ‘Grey Ghost’) 7.03.54 (missed a passage control)
  69. Kurnuszko/Lillie/Jones (Commodore) 7.08.34 (Results sum to 7.06.34)
  70. Birrell/Smith/Nixon (Renault 16TS) 7.18.43 (Results sum to 7.30.43)
  71. Madgwick/Hanna (Ford F100) 7.38.30 (missed a passage control)
  72. Stanley (Trevor)/Harrison (Volvo 244) 7.53.41 (Results sum to 5.53.41, perhaps a missed passage not shown)
  73. Caddey/Mulach/Hanrahan (Fairmont) 8.04.17 (missed two passage controls)
  74. Larkin/Conner/Larkin (EH Holden) 8.10.56 (Results sum to 8.11.06)
  75. Wilson/Baker/Freeze (Mercedes 280S) 10.22.35 (missed a passage control)
  76. Wallis/Cochrane/Davies (Peugeot 404) 10.48.54 (missed a passage control)
  77. Jones/Jones/Webber (Riley) 11.53.01 (missed two passage controls)
  78. Farmer/Farmer/Fraser (Leyland P76) 12.10.31 (probably includes wrong directions)
  79. Turner/Donohue/Sparrow (Leyland P76) 12.30.09 (probably includes wrong directions)
  80. Goldsborough/Flanagan/Ground (Commodore) 12.52.28 (missed a passage control)
  81. Carter/Stephens/Draper (XC Falcon) 15.08.27 (missed a passage control)
  82. Caudle/Drew/Elsden (Datsun 1600) 20.06.23 (Results sum to 17.58.23, probably includes wrong directions)

Saville/Fyvie/Harris (Peugeot 504) are not shown in the results so it is not possible to tell if they visited all controls or not.

There are a number of significant discrepencies in the results, the most notable being the Davis 180B being shown as having lost 1:21:54 which appears to include 59 minutes lost at Bordertown yet the results show an unlikely clean sheet. Another is the Peter Hurrey Celica with stage times totalling two and half hours more than was shown, but perhaps that time lost at Bordertown was recorded erroneously.

Of the final 13 cars that completed the entire route, only 7 were under the hour, which just showed that it was possible to bounce back from a problem, as the Porsche of Herrmann would do. On the other hand, if you look at the positions into Adelaide of the cars that placed 1st to 13th in the final results they were in 2nd, 3rd, 6th, 12th, 10th, 15th, 22nd, 25th, 19th, 28th, 29th, 42nd, 30th. The order didn’t change a lot, just that others fell by the way.

The results classified 162 cars as still being in the event at Adelaide but 5 of them did not start the next dvision. The 79 who missed controls were as follows:

  • Missed 1 control:
    Mulligan/Byrn/Heaney (Escort)
    McArthur/McArthur/McArthur (XY Falcon)
    Moore/Delmont/McCarthur (Leyland P76)
    Beveridge/Heaney/Jarman (Volvo 244)
    Minett/Chapple/Watson (Datsun 1600)
    Kipling/Potticary (Holden HJ Ute)
    Sawyer/Halliday/Mortimer (XD Falcon)
    Bray/McMahon/Smith (Valiant Charger 770)
    Walker/McCann (Renault 12)
  • Missed 2 controls:
    Kuss/Wraight/Knight (Escort)
    Ellis/Wall (Datsun 120Y)
    Bell/Vaughan (Peugeot 203)
    Ingerson/Wilson/MacCulloch (Peugeot 404)
    McDiarmid/Phegan/Travis (Datsun 180B SSS)
    Heaton/Shepherd/Mann (HJ Holden Panel Van)
  • Missed 3 controls:
    Boaden/Pritchard/Atkin (Mazda RX4)
    Hunt/Barnes/Hayes (Datsun 180B)
    Craig/Wansborough (Mini Cooper S)
    Cleaves/Stone (Mini Moke)
    Hedderwick/Forsyth (Renault 16TS)
    Koch/Darling/Koch (Commodore)
    Gough/Hutton/Bishop (LJ Torana)
    Spanbroek/Compton/Plywright (Datsun 240K)
  • Missed 4 controls:
    Myers/Myers/Sinfield (Peugeot 504)
    Easton/Rayner/Bell (Datson 1600)
    Cuthel/Harris (XU1 Torana)
    Gawler/Gawler (Celica)
    O’Donnell/Geissler/Gibson (LX Torana)
    Donoghue/Logan/Grace (Celica)
    Moore/Sethna (VW Beetle)
    Feizaks/Molan (Citroen D)
  • Missed 5 controls:
    Mitchell/Rowe/York (Cortina Mk2)
    Neilson/Stewart/Tyre (HQ Holden)
    Webster/Jolly/McIntyre (FJ Holden)
    Sparkes/Clayton (Ford Fairmont)
    Reinders/Lewis (FJ Holden)
  • Missed 6 controls:
    Tholstrup/Perry (Chevvy Pickup)
    Ohta/Ohnuma/Kabayashi (Toyota TE61 Coupe)
    Kahler/Partridge/Simeon (Mazda RX4)
    Boys/Vonthien (Ford F100)
    Herdy/O’Kane/Gramenz (Peugeot 504)
    Giddings/Jones/Seaman (Datsun 200B)
    Barnes/Smith (Hillman Hunter)
    Roggenkamp/Adair/Eakin (Escort)
    Stockley/O’Neill (Porsche 911E)
    Fullagher/Fullagher/Fullagher/Fullagher (Monaro GTS)
  • Missed 7 controls:
    Alexander/Sedgwick (Escort)
    Cafe/Gurney/Dawson (Mazda RX4)
    Hall/Smith/Lott (Escort)
    Darby/Clark/Stewart (HR Holden)
  • Missed 8 controls:
    Bird/McKinnon (Corolla)
    Garner/Madden/Corban (Torana)
    Stevenson/Eassie/Lincoln (Austin 1800)
    Rayner/Campbell/Loader (HT Holden)
    Bolton/Ebzery (Dodge Kingsway)
  • Missed 9 controls:
    Clyborne/Hayes (Ford Pickup)
    Glass/Loftus/Brittliff (Torana
    O’Shanesy/Dean/O’Shanesy (Fiat 131)
    Fritter/Kelly/Fritter (Datson 1600)
    Mulholland/Mulholland (VW Beetle)
    Ferrier/Smith (Honda Civic)
    Hayden/Phillis/Hogan (Mazda RX2)
    Coleman/Boot (Honda Civic)
    Taylor/McCulloch/Taylor(Peugeot 504)
  • Missed 10 controls:
    Johnson/Marsh (Mazda R100)
    Cleworth/Comley/Ballestrin (Mini GT)
  • Missed 12 controls:
    Barkell/Breese (Escort)
  • Missed 13 controls:
    Bryson/Cable-Cumming (Escort)
  • Missed 14 controls:
    Bolch/Keane/Owen (Monaro HJ GTS)
    Phillips/Drew/Prentice (XD Falcon)
    McTigue/Sheridan/Wilson (HQ Holden Panel Van)
  • Missed 15 controls:
    White/Austin/Hogarth (Mazda Coupe)
    Haslam/Bing (Ford Sedan)
  • Missed 16 controls:
    Duyveston/Kirk/Comley (EH Holden)
    Hargrave/Hutton/Trinks (Torana)
    Parsons/Parsons (Mazda 323)
    Ruyter/Ruyter (Mini Moke)
  • Missed 18 controls
    Mills/McDonald/McCulloch (EH Holden)
    Lunney/Tyler/Tyler (Peugeot 504)

The 10 retirements at or before Adelaide were as follows (5 were classified as reaching Adelaide but they did not start Division S):

Block/Thompson (Falcon Ute) – Broke axle on Seeding Special Stage
Kennett/Stewart/Nye (Austin 1800) – Transmission problems at Tooborac
Baumgartner/Ostler (Gemini) – Navigator broke leg opening a gate near Tarpeena
Goss/Moresi (Landcruiser) – Destroyed by fire near Pinnaroo
Mulligan/Byrn/Heaney (Escort) – Starter motor at Kuitpo, but may have jumped to Marree or Coober Pedy
Alexander/Sedgwick (Escort) – Broke motor at Pinnaroo
Glass/Loftus/Brittliff (Torana) – Out of late running time at Adelaide
Mulholland/Mulholland (VW Beetle) – Out of late running time at Adelaide
Ruyter/Ruyter (Mini Moke) – No details
Reynolds/Herbert/Herbert (VW) – No details