Geoff Olholm and Gordon Trigg have continued their silver streak In Broken Hill, NSW this weekend, winning their second Silver City 1000 cross country rally. Olholm had previously won the race in 2011, and finished second in 2012, however in 2013 the Cairns Coconut Resort Team returned to the top step of the podium with a total time of 6 hours 36min 28 seconds.
The weekend started well for Olholm with a win in Friday nights prologue at the Broken Hill Racecourse and from there he didn’t look back. “We didn’t expect to win the prologue and then decided to stay out in front all weekend and let the guys chase us. There were some stages that we were slower as we had to find the way, but overall being out in front allowed us to have a good clean run and it kept us out of the dust.”
Behind Olholm’s Overdrive Hilux, which only landed in Australia a fortnight ago after Dakar, a major battle developed on Saturday’s stages around Avondale, Farmcote and Mt Gipps and rolled into Sunday for second and third place, with Pinson, Riley, Turley and Denham all vying for the two remaining spots on the podium.
Starting the second day of competition in fifth, Kerry Turley and Rohan Canavan turned up the heat on Sundays three stages towards Wentworth, to move ahead of Pinson’s Falcon Ute, which was forced to retire with a broken Diff, and haul in the flying Mitsubishi’s of Warren Denham and Steve Riley. Their hard charging, which included the stage win on the final SS of the day, put their V8 powered GU Patrol Ute in to second place, just 61 seconds ahead of Steve Riley and John Doble who were forced to settle for third in their V8 short wheel base Pajero.
“The stages were very fast today, but we lost a bit of time to the others which is disappointing as we went as hard as we could and the car was going well. The long stage suited us really well until it became choppy and sandy three-quarters of the way through, which allowed the Overdrive Hilux to get away.” Said Steve Riley
The margin to fourth was equally slim, with Warren Denham and Aaron Topliff piloting the turbo V6 Transvent Triton to a total time of 6hr 43min 11 sec, just 28 seconds behind Riley. Bendigo’s Greg Scanlon and Liam Nunne were fifth outright, ahead of the husband and wife team of Warren and Joy Ridge in sixth. Seventh and Eighth turned into the battle of the Evo Pajero’s with Stewart and Matthew Khouri pipping Michael Denham, whose navigator David Adam had been suffering motion sickness all weekend. Will Dunn and Gareth Edwards made a great cross country debut in the V8 GU normally driven by Will’s Dad, Neil, finishing ninth, while Gerald Schofield and Chris Watman rounded out the top ten.
Des Harrington returned to the track on Sunday in the V8 Patrol to post some quick stage times and get some time in the seat before heading to Safari, after engine problems plagued their attack on Saturday. While a cracked diff housing forced Reg Owen to park his Nissan and join Tony Quinn on the sidelines.
“Overall this weekend was fantastic, we had some of the best offroad racing guys in Australia at this event, including three time Safari winner Steve Riley, three time Dakar competitor Geoff Olholm, the Denham brothers and local driver Kerry Turley on board. With the feedback we have had across the weekend we are looking forward to an even bigger and better event in 2014. We’ve now had it in town for 3 years and we have run it ourselves with a local team the last two years and we are very happy with the way it is developing.” Said Kevin Hind, the Silver City 1000 event director.
“We would also like to thanks Hema Maps, Ironman 4×4, Turley’s Removals and Storage, Cairns Coconut Resort and NKS Auto Electrical for their sponsorship and support in 2013.” He continued.