The Australia Classic 2015 (or “AC15″ for short) rally was held in Tropical North Queensland on the weekend of 20-21 June 2015. Our headquarters at the Southern Esplanade car park hosted the Start/Finish gate activities, while in the hours in between non-competing classic cars and some modern exotics were on display.Out of the 59 cars entered a few have dropped out due to mechanical issues – some were exchanged for the teams’ daily driver vehicles while some had to give up altogether. Only one team wasn’t able to finish – as having travelled from Townsville they could not organise a replacement vehicle to go with for Sunday.
The Hilton Cairns hosted the Awards Gala dinner where competitors, marshals, sponsors and their guests all got together celebrating winners of “1/100 challenges” as well as overall scores, and watching the fantastic event summary video fresh out of the oven. Cars #2 (Andrew Chand & Luke Olholm), #24 (Dan McKelvey & Craig Pullen) and #32 (Daniel Luxton & Jane O’Neill) scored 2 challenge wins each – although these results had to be adjusted for the draws where the older car gets to take the trophy.
Dan and Jane in the 1970 Ford Mustang (car #32) didn’t just win two 1/100 challenges but also scored third overall with just 1,740 penalty points! To put this into perspective, the previous rally – AC13 – was won by Karen and Greg Smith with a score of 1,772 which means that even the bronze team this year did a better score than the winners last time.
While we’re talking about Karen & Greg, they brought a different car this time exchanging the Falcon XM ute for a 1959 Chevy Impala and did really well – having taken the second spot with car #1 in 2015 with penalty points of just 1,644 in total.
The biggest surprise of the event was car #43, the 1972 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am. Driver Tim Trad and current navigator Lee Goldring, in separate cars back then, were the naughty boys of AC12 often aiming to collect the maximum penalties possible. This time they came with a fresh objective, taking the rally so seriously that they even rocked up for the preceding Friday’s practice session. All that hard effort paid off when Tim and Lee collected the trophies as overall winners with a mere 1,389 score. The complete results can be downloaded by clicking here.
The organisers wish to thank all the participants, marshals and sponsoring partners for this fabulous weekend and hope to see you all same time, next year!