1989 George Derrick Memorial Rally (incorporating the Blue Ribbon)

The Derrick, organised by the Car Club of RMIT with the assistance of the Light Car Club of Australia and directed by Rick Thorpe, was held on October 28. In a contra-deal of sorts, the event incorporated the Blue Ribbon Rally, in recognition of the two events combining forced the previous year.

1989 Victorian Rally Championship Round 5

Steve Ashton and Ro Nixon outdrove and outlasted a top-class field to win Round Five of the 1989 VRC in their new Mitsubishi Galant VR4. Run around Heathcote, the George Derrick had an amazing attrition rate. Before the end of the second stage, three of the first six cars had crashed out of the rally which was held on super fast shire and forest roads.

The first to go was Hugh Bell driving Paul Paterson’s Datsun 1600. Bell had once again come out of retirement for a “squirt in the dirt” but his comeback was short lived when he hit a big rock after landing heavily after a jump and retired.

Next to go were Aussie Champs Geoff Portman and Ross Runnalls, driving Ged Beckton’s Datsun 1600. They hit a stump and tore out the left hand front suspension.

Then just 300 metres up the road Peter Fyfe and Gerry Bashford collected a stump with their rear wheel, which spun them around into the trees. Navigator Bashford hurt his legs, which were trapped for a short time. Unfortunately the immaculate Mazda was destroyed.

Setting the early pace was Pat Barber / Jim Maude in their usually reliable Laser TX3 4WD, only to have ball joint break, putting them out of the event. This left Mike Reeves out in front but a mis-interpreted call from navigator Dave Proctor prompted a spin into the trees  and dropping a maximum.

Steve Ashton, after putting in a faultless drive, cruised on to a two minute victory in the deceptively quick Galant VR4. Second went to John Reynolds and David Boyce in a Mazda 323 4WD. They were most pleased with their new car, putting up a number of fastest times. Neil Cuthbert and Daryl Adams put in one of their best rallies with a fine third place in their Datsun 1600. Brother Glen Cuthbert, with Peter Gale, were fourth in their Grant Walker Escort, closely followed by Melbourne Motorsport’s Toyota T-18 of Nigel Letty / Rob Davis.


Results and entry list

PlaceDriverNavigatorCarGroupTimeState RecognisedClubmanNovice
1Steve AshtonRo NixonGalant VR4PRC1:36:551
2John ReynoldsDavid BoyceMazda 323 4WDPRC1:38:142
3Neil CuthbertDaryl AdamsDatsun 1600Clubman1:38:1531
4Glen CuthbertPeter GaleFord Escort MkIIPRC1:39:2042
5Nigel LettyRob DavisToyota TE71 GTClubman1:39:425
6David GreigPaul TirantDatsun 280ZPRC1:39:54
7=Mike ReevesDavid ProctorDatsun 1600Clubman1:40:12
7=Grant WalkerDennis O’BrienFord Escort MkIIClubman1:40:12
9Graeme GamboldChris RandellBMW 325iX 4WDPRC1:40:436
10Eric PietilaMike RebbechiMazda 323 4WDPRC1:41:48
11Gary KendrickRon GottschalkHolden Commodore V8PRC1:43:4173
12John BrannAlan HallDatsun 1600Clubman1:45:198
13Barry CollinsHelen WylieDatsun 1600Clubman1:45:4594
14Greg HoinvilleMichael CainsFord Escort MkIIPRC1:45:5010
15Brendan EdgertonGraeme HoldingMitsubishi LancerPRC1:48:5951
16Simon ShortJeremy LakeFord Escort MkIIClubman1:49:55
17Owen PolanskiJeff OsbornFord Escort MkIIClubman1:51:0462
18Mick WhitmoreGraham MashiterFord Escort MkIIPRC1:51:197
19Jeff PatonMartin RyanDatsun 180B SSSClubman1:53:0983
20Benny MarsonGreg MaunderDatsun 1200PRC1:53:279
21Peter HauslerBo HauslerMitsubishi GalantPRC1:54:00104
22Rob PlenterMichael SeidlerMazda CapellaClubman1:54:165
23Barrie CrockerPhil PrenticeMitsubishi LancerClubman1:55:596
24Rowan FitzgeraldDarryl BennieDatsun 180BClubman1:56:037
25Graham SymonsJohn PanozzoDatsun 1600Clubman1:56:258
26Jason KingRussell HardieDatsun 1600Clubman1:58:529
27Randal CruikshankBruce DouglasToyota T18Clubman1:58:5910
28Ian BairdSonia MaxwellDatsun 180BClubman2:00:08


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