1981 Windscreens O'Brien Begonia Rally

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.

A report appeared in April Unicar.
David Hodge placed third with Tom Seymour in the big Cortina
Chris and Simon Brown were fourth in the Datsun 180B
Warwick Smith and Janiene Kilfoyle were fifth in the Lancer
Another Lancer placed sixth in the hands of John White with John Williams calling the corners
Hugh Bell and Steve Ellis dominated the 1981 Begonia
After his roll in the 1980 Begonia, David Officer placed second in 1981

Results and entry list

PlaceDriverNavigatorCarTimeGrade 2Clubman
1Hugh BellSteve EllisDatsun 16003:46:51
2David OfficerKate HobsonGalant3:54:301
3David HodgeTom SeymourFord Cortina TD3:54:332
4Chris BrownSimon BrownDatsun 180B SSS3:56:03
5Warwick Smith Janiene KilfoyleLancer4:03:02
6John WhiteJohn WilliamsLancer4:07:593
7Graeme WiseMark BrookeDatsun4:09:2541
8F. MarkusDavid JohnsDatsun4:09:375
9Peter CorkranDavid StewartLancer4:10:156
10Simon BirrellDi CornishGalant4:10:267
11Brian SmithJohn BirrellGalant4:11:162
12Andy MitchellPaul PatersonDatsun 16004:11:50
13Denise McCargilDavid MilneLancer4:12:06
14Kevin KingJohn ParkinsonDatsun4:13:233
15Ron PeddarGordon PaulDatsun4:13:294
16Stephen MitchellRon BrownGalant4:15:275
17Bruce RobertsonStuart ListerGalant4:21:01
18John MottLynton RoweDatsun 16004:26:156

Summary Results

Detailed Results

Stage Times


Victoria Park, then Saturday’s stages were in the Creswick and Spargo Creek areas. Sunday’s stages were in the Scarsdale area, finishing with the popular Sago Hill Quarry stage.

Route Instructions Division 1

Route Instructions Division 2

Plot of stages

Other event documents

not available yet

Media Coverage