With the best part of a week before entries close for the first round of the NSW State Rally Championship, the Car Auctions Sydney Rally of Lithgow, an extremely strong field has made their intentions known.

Boaden, Mitchell, Giddens and Croker - former State champions who have also shown their skills at the pointy end of ARC competition - will line up against what is shaping up to be a full field of 60 cars, including other hard chargers such as Wauchope’s Steve Slade, Sydney’s Darren Williams, and Claude Murray from Bega who will be giving the turbo 4WD cars a hurry up in his potent Datsun 1600.

Queenslander Glenn Brinkman will be out looking for a podium in his new Lancer Evo 9, while ARCom chairman Ed Ordynski and co-driver Iain Stewart will have their work cut out in a borrowed Hyundai Excel against Glenn Farant and Anna Ritson, seasoned Excel series competitors.

Bryan Van Eck could surprise in his first State event in a turbo car after successfully punting a 2WD Corolla for many years.

The second generation of rally drivers is also well catered for with Coffs Harbour’s Nathan Quinn, son of Martin, backing up from his efforts at Rally Queensland, as well as Molly Taylor, who has found time in her tough ARC schedule to bring the Ralliart Penrith Mirage to Lithgow after a strong outright showing in Queensland.

If anybody needed proof that rallying is open to all cars and classes, young Queensland crew, Greg Lathan and Nathan Long, should dispel that myth coming back to compete for the second year in their Lada Samara. They hope to renew their friendship with multiple Australian Safari winner Bruce “The Goose” Garland, who will be performing fast sweep duties in his rapid Isuzu MU.

The fledgling classic rally car movement will be well represented by the best examples currently running in Australia. The central coast of NSW will be well represented by Gerald Schofield and Ian Hill running Escort Mk2 Group 4 replicas. This will be the first outing for both brand new cars.

Matt Ruggles will drive his potent Triumph TR8, John Hills will be bringing his Mk1 BDA out, along with Sydney-sider Jeff David, returning to the sport after many years in his potent Porsche 911 RSR. Bathurst resident Richard Galley will have his Z-car out to keep the others honest over the 150 competitive kilometers on the May 12 event.

Spectators and officials will be able to keep up with the event by tuning to Rally Radio on 93.3FM for live results, driver interviews and cool tunes. Those who can’t get to Lithgow can check updated results at www.rallyoflithgow.com during the course of the event.

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