Australia’s leading offroad racers will launch into Goondiwindi this weekend, for the fourth and final round of the 2015 ARB Off Road Racing Series. Postponed due to unseasonal wet weather in August, the Goondiwindi Motorsport Club has pulled out all stops to reschedule the race for this weekend. Giving competitors and race fans the chance to experience the regions exciting terrain. The Albins ARB Goondiwindi 400 has attracted 80 teams, the biggest field in years. With many travelling from as far as South Australia, Victoria and North Queensland to take on the Queenslanders in their own backyard.
The fleet of twin turbo charged and V8 buggies is headlined by the ARB Series leader, Matt Owen in the #41 V8 Alumicraft buggy. Trailing Owen by just 2 points heading in to the final round is Brad Chasemore in the #10 Jimco, ensuring the racing will go right down to the wire. Piling the pressure on will be the in form Jack Rhodes in the #91 Exact Mining Jimco, fresh from wins at the Pines and Riverland Enduro. Danny Brown, Michael Marson, Ryan and Nev Taylor, Aaron James and his son, Tanner will be some of the others to watch for the outright lead.
A strong field of Extreme 4WD Trucks will be eager to get out amongst the famous Goondiwindi Melon holes, with local Jamie Knight sizing up his iconic Red Chevy alongside the Trophy Trucks of former Australian champ, Hayden Bentley and Micklefab trucks of Mark Lacey, Ivan Robertson, Michael Denham. Chris Rosch, the high flying Luke Hall and Mark-Paul Grant round out the field.
The Prolite and Super 1650 Classes are also well stocked and ready to cause an upset, with the 3500cc naturally aspirated buggies of #117 David Middlemiss, who is currently 3rd outright in the ARB Series and local hot shots, Tony Fehlhaber, Shawn Swaffield and Todd Lawrence. The 4WD classes continue to be well supported, with 5 Production and 13 Extreme 4WD’s entered.
While Jamie and Symon Knight fly the flag for Goondiwindi in the Extreme 2WD category, locals also feature prominently on the buggy side of the entry list. In outright contention, Joe Bulmer will pilot the #36 V8 powered Jimco, while Mick and Karen Napier will run the always quick #68 Mendeola. Mick Phillips will hit the track in his#242 Alumicraft, with his wife and kids rotating through the navigators seat over the weekend. Amongst the Extreme 4WD’s, Steven Donpon and Paul Vann are returning to the track at Gundy in their #860 turbo charged Mitsubishi L200.
The Goondiwindi Motorsport Association is proud the event is not only part of the ARB Off Road Racing Series but also the sole round of the Queensland Off Road Championship in 2015. The event is currently the longest established Queensland round on the calendar and has continued to be well supported.
The Albins Offroad Goondiwindi 400 will launch on Friday night at the Goondiwindi Showgrounds from 4pm, with scrutiny and a show and shine until 8pm. Held in a festival atmosphere, it will be a great opportunity to meet the drivers and grab an autograph before they hit the dirt. Racing commences on Saturday morning 20 km east from Goondiwindi just off the Cunningham Hwy on Kerimbilla Lane. The venue provides an unrivalled perspective of Malypunyah Run, one of the most exciting pieces of offroad racetrack on the planet, where the big horsepower trucks and buggies dance through the big melon holes and whoops with the throttle pined. With live commentary and refreshments on sale, spectators will be able to sit back and watch the race for the championship unfold.
The green flag will drop at 10.30am on Saturday morning for the Prologue and Goondiwindi Tyre Service Top Ten Shoot Out which will get the blood pumping before the big desert racers stretch their legs that afternoon with one lap of the long course. Racing kicks off again at 8am on Sunday morning, which will see the race cars tackle another 4 laps of the 80km course.