Photos from the inaugural 2018 Adelaide Hills Rally, an ARC and SARC round replacing the long running Rally of South Australia. The event was run over 3 days starting with a shakedown stage in the middle of the day before two circuits of the new rallycross/go-kart track at The bend, Tailem Bend on Thursday evening. On Saturday the rally headed for the council (or shire for you eastcoasters) roads between Mt Barker and Murray Bridge. Sunday the rally headed into the Adelaide Hills proper repeating some of the stages from Rally of South Australia in the past including the return of the mighty Mawson Road stage. Mt Crawford Forest (in reverse direction, so no Jack’s Jump) and Telephone Road (without very wet creek crossings this time) would also be included. The entrants were divided into 4 different classes, ARC, ARC2, SARC and Classic Cup with some drivers nominating to enter more than one class. One solitary Clubman entered on Friday and Saturday. Introductory Rally entrants would drive on Sunday.
The top end, the ARC, was expected to be a fight between Ely Evans (Skoda Fabia R5) and the Bates brothers, Harry and Lewis in a very potent Toyota Yaris and older Toyota Corolla S2000 respectively, joined by the 2 new Subaru WRX cars of former ARC winner Molly Taylor and Steve Glenney. Best of the SARC entrants contesting the ARC category was recent SARC Walky 100 5-time winner Declan Dwyer (Mitsubishi Lancer EVO VI), Zayne Admiraal (older Subaru WRX) and Jamie Pohlner (Subaru WRX). Probably the most interesting car would be the Nissan 370Z (sounding rather Porsche like) of Adam Kaplan.
Top 3 overall after the 2 The Bend stages were: ARC – Harry Bates, Evans and then Dwyer. ARC2 – Dwyer, Glenney and Admiraal. SARC – Dwyer, Admiraal (7.6secs behind) and Peter Schey (Subaru WRX) 8.5secs behind Dwyer. Classic Cup – Jason Sims (Datsun 180B), Michael Busby (Mazda RX7) and Craig Haysman (Triumph TR7). Paul Knopka (Subaru WRX) would go the wrong way and incur a 3min penalty to be in last place overall. Jack Monkhouse, always a crowd pleaser, wouldn’t get off the line as a driveshaft broke. He was back for the second run but with a 3min penalty. Andrew Gleeson would also incur a 3min penalty, perhaps for hitting too many witches hats!
On Day 2, Evans’s run would come to an end 600m into the long 32km Monarto Mega 1 stage handing Harry Bates the victory on a platter. A grass fire on the stage saw a long delay as fire crews headed out to the fire. After it was put out, too much time had been lost to run and only the ARC, ARC2 and Classic Cup entrants completed 2 runs of the Monarto Mega stage. Admiraal’s co-driver’s side would find a tree on the same stage coming out of a ford, but worse, Kaplan would roll the Nissan 350z and not continue. Glenney would also have a roll but was able to get to the end of the day. Top 3 after Day 2: ARC – Bates, Glenney and Taylor. ARC2 – Glenney, Dwyer and Admiraal. SARC – Dwyer, Schey and Admiraal. Classic Cup – Haysman, Sims and Paix (Ford Escort). Retirements were Glenney, Kaplan and the Nicholas Cagney (Mitsubishi Lancer EVO III usually driven by his dad Dale who had upgraded to a EVO6 for this event) with clutch problems.
Day 3 saw a few entrants go missing. The SARC category would only be completing one of the 2 Mawson Road stages. At the end of the day the results would show the top 3 in each category as being: ARC – Evans, Bates, Taylor. ARC2 – Admiraal, Pohlner and Cagney (the senior). SARC – Admiraal, Schey and Matt Selley (Ford Escort MkII Warrior). Classic Cup – Sims, Haysman and Wayne Mason (Ford Escort MkII). Clubman – Garry Dodd (Subaru WRX) over 10mins faster than Bawden in a Nissan Skyline. Retirements for SARC would include Selley, Paul Heenan (Mitsubishi Galant with broken clutch), Paul Knopka (Subaru WRX, rollover on Stage 1 Telephone Road), Simon Hoff (Ford Escort MkII, did not start Heat 2), Rob Hunt (Mitsubishi Lancer EVO VI, mechanical) and Michael Busby (accident). Dwyer, who had put in an excellent effort on Heat 1 would have problems from the opening 2 stages and would drop stages.
Combining the 2 Heats points would see the event wins and placings as follows: