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Western Australia’s first Miss Rally Australia finalist, Michelle Johnson from Karratha, is not your average sports model. The blonde beauty is a fully qualified crane driver for one of the mining giants in the North West, who likes pushing herself to the limit, whether it be getting her hands dirty on the mine site or tearing up the dirt tracks on her own motocross bike.

Michelle won the State’s first Miss Rally Australia heat at the Tambrey Tavern and Centre in Karratha. The outgoing Aries was cheered into first place by the 600 strong crowd to secure one of the twelve coveted positions as a Telstra Rally Australia promotions model with the chance to win the ultimate prize of a round the world trip for two and $1000 spending money.

“I loved the Miss Rally Australia heat and didn’t want it to stop!” said 19-year-old Michelle. “It was such an adrenaline rush up on stage! I couldn’t believe it when they called my name out for first place. I was so shocked at first but so happy when I realised the awesome prize I had won.

“I think this competition is great. I’ve never done any modelling before and this is my first on stage modelling experience. I was completely overwhelmed by how much support there is for the Miss Rally Australia competition. ” said Michelle.

Michelle moved to Karratha from Perth when she was 18 to make the most of Western Australia’s mining boom and is keen to continue working in the industry. She has travelled throughout Western Australia and loves the beautiful turquoise beaches and chilled out atmosphere of the North West’s Coral Bay.

“If I won first prize, I would love to travel to Canada and go to one of their ice hockey games, and also visit Las Vegas.” said Michelle.

Michelle can’t wait to come to Perth. She has fond memories of her dad taking her to Telstra Rally Australia when she was younger, and is looking forward to more on-stage experience at the Miss Rally Australia fashion parades which take place every night at the Gloucester Park Super Special Stage.

Michelle is the first of twelve lucky finalists who will work alongside the world’s best drivers and fastest rally cars at the Telstra Rally Australia’s Opening Ceremony, Rally Rumble at Murray Street Mall, Rally Show at Langley Park and the WRC Podium Finish.

The 2006 winner will be announced at the Miss Rally Australia final on Friday, October 27 at The Shed, Northbridge.
Telstra Rally Australia takes place in Perth and surrounding areas from 26 to 29 October. It is the 19th and final year that Perth will host the Australian round of the World Rally Championships.
Tickets start from $20 and are available from Ticketmaster outlets on 1300 136 122, or via www.rallyaustralia.com
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