The Begonia Rally, organised by the Ballarat Light Car Club, was held on February 28th.
1981 VRC Round 2 – Windscreens O’Brien Begonia Rally to the flying Hugh Bell
It was a runaway victory to Hugh Bell and Steve Ellis in the flying Datsun 1600. More than 7 minutes separated them from second placed David Officer and Kate Hobson in their Galant, a mere 3 seconds ahead of David Hodge and Tom Seymour in Tom’s unusual but extremely fast Cortina.
With Ross Runnalls as director, Geoff Portman had Phil Rainer in the hot seat in the 200B. They were more than a minute adrift from Bell at the end of the first day and were forced to retire midway through Sunday.
Another crew expected to challenge for victory were interstaters, Ian Hill and Ann Heaney but they had a nasty accident in their Escort on SS7 requiring them to be hospitalised.