2017 NSW Champions

Gary’s Motorsport Tyres NSW Rally Championship:
The Rally Panel takes great pleasure in congratulating our new Rally Champions for 2017.  Following the final round at Kennards Hire Rally Australia on 17 November, Bryan Van Eck and Jim Gleeson won the closely fought battle against Tony Sullens and Kaylee Newell, who suffered car problems at the event.  Significantly, after a few years’ layoff, Bryan gave himself just one season to have a crack at the NSW crown and was jubilant at the final result.  And just as significantly, this is Jim’s first NSW Championship after co-driving for 40 years with over 50 drivers including the best in the business.

The Panel also heartily congratulates the winners of the Barry Ferguson 2WD Championship – Andrei Artamonov and Gleb Bonch – whose efforts in the Mitsubishi Mirage Cyborg were a picture of consistency throughout the season.

TechWorkz Development Rally Series:
Going into the final DRS round, Bob Moore and Dave Gray had a chance to take out the Series from 2016 champs Michael Valantine and Erin Valantine.  But a tricky bend put paid to Moore’s and Gray’s event, with the Valantines taking out the DRS Series for the second year in succession.  The Panel offers warm congratulations to the Valantines for a tenaciously fought battle throughout 2017.

The 4WD winners, Jason Giddins and Katie Fletcher, had already been decided with two rounds to go, but they still contested the final two rounds as the true Clubman competitors they are.  Congratulations to Jason and Katie.

Premier Panel Beating Hyundai Rally Series:
Congratulations go to Andrew Crowley and John Crowley who finished on top of the HRS, after some ding dong battles with Glenn Inkster/Geoff Horn throughout the year.

V-Sport NSW Rallysprint Series:
Congratulations to Bruce McDougall/Kellie Pearce from Coffs Harbour who emphatically took out the Series in their Charade, showing that skill and consistency reign supreme when chasing a series.

2017 Presentation and 2018 Launch Party – 20 January 2018

Please mark Saturday 20 January 2018 as a milestone date in your diaries – a date not to be missed in fact!  The Presentation of 2017 awards and launch of the 2018 season will take place at the Atura Hotel, Blacktown, commencing at 6pm. We have a host of exciting events planned for the night and if you’re a rally nut you need to be there!

2016 Australian Rally Champion Molly Taylor will host the evening, and the newly crowned Australian Rally Champion driver Nathan Quinn will be handing over the winners’ trophies to the 2017 NSW Rally Champions.
On top of that, well known journalist and competitor Jon Thomson will be hosting a rally trivia quiz with a range of prizes to give away.

In the couple of hours prior to the presentation, the Rally Panel is hosting an informal meet and greet session at the hotel bar, where competitors, officials and anyone with an interest in the sport are encouraged to have a chat with Panel members.  There will be no formal agenda, no formal presentations, just a relaxed environment to put forward ideas, provide feedback, ask questions and have a general chin wag about our shared passion.

The 2018 Rally Calendar

Exciting news for 2018 includes the launching of the East Coast Classic Rally Series, a series of 7 events for Classic and Club Rally Cars first manufactured at least 30 years prior to the year of competition.  The ECCRS has generated a great deal of interest and will be run in conjunction with the NSW Championship events in 2018.

In a move designed to encourage increased participation in our sport, the Rally Panel has made some changes to the various rally series for 2018…

The NSW Rally Championship will continue as the premier rally series in NSW.  East Coast Classic Rally Series events will be run in conjunction with most, if not all, the NSWRC events.

The current Development Rally Series will be re-named the Clubman Rally Series, to more closely reflect the fact that many Clubman competitors can hardly be described as “developing” in the sport, having contested events for many years.

The Development Rally Series will re-appear as a novice category, for those relative new comers who are developing their experience, skills and vehicle preparation.

The Hyundai Rally Series will continue as a popular, low cost formula for both new and experienced competitors.

A new, open category will be run under the Clubman Rally Series, for those competitors who are too fast to contest the Clubman series but prefer the simplicity and lower costs of Clubman events. The winners of this category won’t enjoy the prestige of Clubman Champions, but will be presented with awards at the year-end presentation.

The NSW Rallysprint Series will continue in 2018, and joining this series will be the popular Bondo Rallysprint in the south of the State.

Naming Rights Partners

Rally NSW – a CAMS-owned business operated by the Rally Panel – has been fortunate to partner a number of businesses in 2017, all of whom helped with promoting our sport to the wider community.  We would like to thank the following businesses for their foresight and generosity in partnering Rally NSW in 2017:

Gary’s Motorsport Tyres – Gary Harrison
TechWorkz – Michael Harding
Premier Panel Beating – Keith Byrn
V-Sport – Barrie Smith

Rally NSW is very pleased to advise that all the above businesses have expressed a desire to continue their partnerships into 2018.

A new partner for 2018 and beyond:
Rally NSW will take great pleasure in announcing a new naming rights partner to the NSW Rally Championship at the 2018 Season Launch.  This partnership will boost the promotional opportunities for our sport, and Rally NSW in turn is also keen to assist our new partner with their marketing and promotional strategies.  We look forward to a long and highly successful relationship with our new partner.

ECCRS partners:
Rally NSW also wishes to thank the following Classic rally competitors whose businesses are partnering us to deliver a highly promoted East Coast Classic Rally Series in 2018:
Clay Badenoch
Tom Dermody
Richie Dalton

2018 Rally Calendar

The 2018 NSW Rally Calendar will consist of seven NSWRC/ECCRS events, six Clubman/DRS/HRS events and seven Rallysprint events.  Please go to http://www.rallynsw.com.au/series/ to view the calendar and details of the individual events as they are released.

Panel Membership

The Rally Panel has been extremely productive in 2017, implementing a host of initiatives for 2018, primarily aimed at increasing participation in the sport.  Due to the expected expanded workload in 2018, we have increased the number of Panel members from 8 to 11 and will also be seeking assistance from others in the rally community through the year.

The 2018 CAMS NSW Rally Panel consists of:
John Sparkes (Chair)
Lui MacLennan (Secretary)
Carol Sparkes (Treasurer)
Tim Wilkins
Jim Gleeson
Adriana Pallister
Brett Middleton
Andrew Chapman (new)
David Gray (new)
Andy Pierce (new)
Bethany Cullen (new)
The Panel regrets that Ernie Martin could not to re-nominate due to work commitments, as he has been a very valuable member. We wish Ernie well and hope he’ll return to the Panel as soon as he is able to.

Panel Business in 2018

Promotional activities will figure prominently in 2018, with increased income from naming rights partnerships enabling a tripling of promotional expenditure over 2017 levels.

Other key activity areas for 2018 will include safety, officials, junior development, competitor liaison, organiser support and scrutineers, as well as the regular activities such as secretarial, financial,  competition conditions, point scores, driver ranking and web master.

The Panel is always keen to hear ideas and suggestions on the co-ordination of the sport in our State.  Please direct all enquiries to info@rallynsw.com.au.

Finally, the Rally Panel wishes all those associated with our sport a safe, exciting and rewarding 2018.

John Sparkes
Chair – CAMS NSW Rally Panel

Download this Report