Current South Australian Rally Champions: Matt Selley and Joana Fuller showed us again why they are rated as the number one crew in the state by taking out the 2008 Walky 100 (Robertstown) Rally.

Round two of the South Australian Rally championship was held in and around the environs of the Mid-North town of Robertstown on May 31.

Robertstown Rally is a long held favourite of the SARC with its dust and propensity to break cars and crew. It has been a highlight of the SARC series for many years.

The rally is staged as a day / night pace noted format to truly challenge the crews. It offers a good variety of very fast open shire Council roads and tight technical stages which take in some of the Mid north’s most scenic countryside.  Rocky terrain and heavy dust are one of the most difficult challenges the crews again encountered on the stages.

The event attracted a strong field of 30 crews including a number of interstate competitors.  The crews of Brendan Reeves/Rhianon Smyth and Molly Taylor.Toni Feaver made the trip over to compete.  Molly’s parents also attended to help out and offer service duties, and it was a pleasure to see the undisputed queen of the Australian rally scene, Coral Taylor, getting involved in and around the Service Park.

A SARC ballot draw was also implemented at this rally. All drivers with a (SARC) DPI above .97 chose a number out of a hat to correspond to their starting order.  Joana Fuller (Selley/Fuller) managed to draw car 1, with Declar Dwyer drawing car 2.

The first competitive stage of the event (Dips End) saw the top four cars run through but it was then downgraded to a transport after a decision by the stage commander.  This was a result of apparent timing or course safety issue.

SS2  “Scrubby Reverse” was a short 5km blast through the countryside. It was soon obvious that the pace was going to be very quick from the outset, due to a number of crews pushing hard to make up valuable points lost in the first round of the SARC series.

One tight off camber 3-4 left near the flying finish also offered its fair share of excitement, again causing some cars to come to grief as they had the year before. Some unlucky crews even managed to claim an 'off' during recce!

The third stage “Who’s Julia” was new for 2008 and turned out to be a great stage for both spectators and crews. Some very good spectator viewing was also facilitated with the use of a dam wall, which allowed excellent sweeping views of a number of fast turns and a jump across a road intersection.

By SS4 there was a clear order to the times appearing.  2006 SARC champion Declan Dwyer had pulled out a 22 second lead over second placed Matt Selley and a 28 second lead over third placed Gary Brown.

This was the first time most of us had ever seen the creek empty in the centre of SS4 and it offered some faster times through the area. The quarry towards the end of the stage again provided some of the most spectacular driving and jumps seen on the day. 02 Rally Sport’s Simon Orme performed one massive jump that almost defied gravity and provided the photographers some awesome images!

Carwin Harries was forced to retire with a mechanical DNF after a small off resulted in a punctured radiator.  Reg Marratt was also forced to retire the high revving Escort after mechanical issues.

By SS5 the order was again to change rapidly as Declan Dwyer had a fairly major off that involved an over-run after a jump, resulting in a collision with a bank and then into a fence, causing a damaged driveshaft. The driveshaft sadly then ate half of the end of the motor, resulting in timing belt damage leading to 14 bent valves in the engine. He was forced to retire his Evo 3 back to the service park under a mechanical DNF.

Robertstown’s reputation as a car breaker was certainly starting to live up to its reputation!

SS6 saw the retirement of Freidrichs & Seng after a huge jump broke the strut top which proceeded to panel beat the bonnet during the stage. Brendan Reeves also blasted through this stage posting fourth fastest time, a very impressive run for a non-turbo car.

SS7 (Roast Lite) was an awesome after-dark blast across about 25km of terrain, including following the top of the ridge line to the back valleys behind the ranges.
The dust was a major issue on this stage due to the dropping of light and no wind.
This caused the retirement of the Andriolas crew as they deemed the conditions too dangerous for the lighting they had on the car.

A lot of the competitors had issues and were constantly seen dipping their lights to avoid the reflection from the dust in certain spots. This fast stage also saw the retirement of Paul Heenan in the VR 4 from clutch failure.

By SS8 (Roast lite 2) the dust had settled somewhat allowing a better run through the stage. Brendan Reeves again posted fourth fastest time on this stage.
Molly Taylor’s incredible Mitsubishi Mirage could also be heard screaming over the top of the range from over eight kilometres away as she high revved her way to an incredible time and also the fastest 2WD award of the rally.

Final placing (as of 02/06/08) are:

1:   Selley/ Fuller

2:  Brown/ Dale  

3:  Brand/ Browne

4:  Reeves/Smyth  
5:  Orme/Nicholls  
6:  Krichauff/Krichauff 
7:  Taylor/Feaver  

Fastest 2 wheel drive: Molly Taylor / Toni Feaver  P2 Mitsubishi Mirage

Check back soon to our PHOTO GALLERY for heaps of Robertstown Rally photos from

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