Dwyer, Admiraal win battles, Schey wins the war
Declan Dwyer and Craig Adams (Mitsubishi EVO VI) and Zayne Admiraal and Matthew Heywood (Subaru Impreza WRX) have each won heats in the Bott Adelaide Hills Rally, fourth and final round of the 2018 MRF Tyres South Australian Rally Championship on September 21-23.
For Peter Schey and Kate Catford (Subaru WRX), finishing second in each heat was sufficient for them to win this year’s Championship.
Dwyer’s times in the two runs in Friday night’s spectacular Super Special Stages in the stadium area at The Bend Motorsport Park were quick enough to place him third in ARC, putting him ahead of Admiraal, Schey and Matt Selley and Hamish McKendrick’s Escort.
Saturday consisted of two runs each of The Glen and Back Callington in the Adelaide Hills, before heading to the plains toward the Murray River for two back-to-back runs of Monarto Mega, aptly named at 37 km.
Selley retired from third place with a broken axle on Back Callington 1, Dwyer increasing his lead to 30 seconds over Schey, Mike Busby and Ashley Busby-Lyons (Mazda RX7), also leading Classic Cup, 17 seconds back, with Admiraal 2 seconds away.
Dwyer then pulled out a lead of 1 minute 4 seconds on the reruns of the two stages from Schey whilst Busby crashed out on Back Callington 2, moving Admiraal up to third ahead of Rob Hunt and Jeremy Browne (Mitsubishi EVO VI).
On Monarto Mega 1, Dwyer pulled out a further 39 seconds on Schey with Shane Alker and Karien Heimsohn (Subaru WRX) 40 seconds further back, 6 seconds ahead of Jamie Pohlner and Ken Moore (Subaru WRX) with Admiraal sixth behind Andrew Gleeson and Fred Brewer’s Datsun Stanza after sideswiping a tree on the stage.
A small grass fire on stage caused the second run for SARC cancelled due to time constraints.
Dwyer won the heat by 44 seconds from Schey with Admiraal 9 seconds back, in turn 14 seconds up on Alker.
Schey had amassed enough points to win the MRF Tyres S.A. Rally Championship with one day to go.
Dwyer was immediately in trouble in Sunday’s opening Mt. Crawford and Telephone Road stages, finishing them minus brakes. This was rectified in the following service, only to suffer tailshaft failure on the second time through Crawford.
Pohlner went quickest on the first and third stages with Dale Cagney and Mark Dycer (Mitsubishi EVO VI) picking up the second.
Schey was fastest on Telephone Road 2 and Mt. Torrens 1 before Selley’s repaired Escort went quickest on both Mawsons Road and Retreat Valley, where Admiraal slipped into the lead ahead of Pohlner.
Schey was fastest on Mt. Torrens 2, from Selley and Admiraal, which moved him up to second.
The final Mawsons Road 2 was only for ARC, so Admiraal finished the heat 17 seconds ahead on Schey, Selley 11 seconds away, and Pohlner another 3 seconds back. Dwyer’s had EVO limped through the final three stages in 2WD to be classified 19t.
Schey/Catford final score in the Championship was 183 points, Admiraal/Heywood 156.5, Cagney/Dycer 113.5, Alker/Heimsohn 111.5, Paul Heenan/Andrew Kriesl 110 and Pohlner/Moore 96.