West Australian Travis Robinson and Trent Anthony (#13 Jimco OBR Nissan 3500cc) have completed Day 1 of the 2017 Tatts Finke Desert Race as the lead car into Finke for the overnight stop of Australia’s greatest and toughest off-road event.
Travis Robinson was first away this morning from the Alice Springs start after having prologued in first position yesterday. He was never challenged today for the 226 kilometre journey completed in a time of 1 hour 48 minutes and 44.6 seconds.
Second into Finke was the son and father team of Shannon and Ian Rentsch in their #33 Jimco Buggy Nissan 3500cc with a time of 1 hour 51minutes 58.4 seconds.
Movers in today’s field included Beau Robinson/Shane Hutt (#413 Geiser Bros Trophy Truck Chev 6000cc) who came into Finke in third spot with a time of 1 hour 54minutes 15.7 seconds ahead of Jack Rhodes/David Pullino (#1 Jimco Aussie Special Nissan 3500cc) who were fourth having completed the journey in a time of 1 hour 54 minutes 47.4 seconds.
Toby Price/Luke Henry (#487 Geiser 2015 Chev 6000cc) also moved up from their prologue position of seventh to finish at Finke today in fifth position with a time of 1 hour 56 minutes 16.5 seconds.
Greg Gartner/Jamie Jennings (#410 Ford F150 5900cc) who prologued in fifth position lost a large amount of time between the Bundooma and Mount Squires checkpoints and eventually came into Finke with a time of 2 hours 41 minutes 14.8 seconds well down the finishing list.
American competitor Harley Letner with Luke Ayers (#59 Tatum 2005 Chev 6000cc) in his first Finke event finished in 13th position with a time of 2 hours 17 minutes and 47.3 seconds.
A notable non finisher today was five time Tatts Finke Desert Race winner Mark Burrows/Colin Hodge(#21 Jimco 2012 Holden) who were reported to have hit a tree only 10 kilometres from Alice Springs in his 21st start of the event.
Last year’s winner Glenn Owen/Mathew Ryan (#30 Jimco Aussie Special Holden) were also non-finishers.
After camping overnight the car and buggy field will leave Finke tomorrow (Monday June 12) at 7.15am CST for the run back to the Alice Springs finish with the first cars expected to arrive at approximately 9.05am CST.
PROBUGGY: #13 TRAVIS ROBINSON / TRENT ANTHONY
PROLITE: #135 ANDREW MOWLES / MATT MORGAN
SPORTSLITE: #1050 SCOTT HAGG
SUPER 1650: #230 TREVOR TAYLOR / MICK CRAWFORD
SPORTSMAN: #321 WILLIAM WILLIS / MATT JR WILLIS
SUPERLITE A: #6612 JASON NEATE / PETER NEATE
SUPERLITE B: #676 NATHAN CHIVERS / SCOTT O’CONNELL
EXTREME 2WD: #413 BEAU ROBINSON / SHANE HUTT
PERFORMANCE 2WD: #507 MICHAEL RANSON / JAY DAVIDSON
PRODUCTION 4wd: #702 GEOFF PICKERING / DYLAN WATSON
EXTREME 4WD: #817 MARK REYNOLDS / ANDREW CAUFIELD
Full results on the event web site: www.finkedesertrace.com.au
Photos by Randall Kilner / Steven Godfrey – Dirtcomp