Bailey survives difficult SA Short Course

Last year’s BFGoodrich Motorsport Australia Off Road Championship (AORC) runner-up Roydn Bailey has won his first major event for 2020 after taking out the Clive Dubois Memorial Short Course.

Hosted by the Adelaide Buggy Club, 35 crews from around South Australia took part in the two-day event, where Bailey guided his SXS Turbo to a one minute win alongside his son Lachlan, who shared co-driving duties and navigator Tyson Warner.

While the event was short, it proved to be quite brutal as just 13 crews managed to finish all six heats, with the Baileys proving to be the fastest of the finishers, despite not winning one heat for the whole event.

“Once again we were the last man standing. We did a tyre and rim 2km from the finish line in the third heat. It’s all about being there at the end,” Roydn said post-event.

“We’re not the fastest at events, but we’re always there when we need to be. We always finish and that is what it takes to win championships or events. WE got a bit lucky but at the end of the day, we’re responsible for ourselves only.

“I was very proud of Lachlan. He had an OLT test on Saturday and most of Sunday and this was a really good opportunity for him. He did a very good job.

“Saturday was dry and dusty and then Sunday was muddy and slippery and then got dusty again, so It was great for him to experience all kinds of terrain.”

In second place, a further one minute slower than the Baileys, was Pro-Lite class winners Adam Bierl and Nyree Birmingham, with the duo posting the fastest time in the final heat, while Nev Day and Danny Tulla finished in third place three and half minutes slower.

The fight for fourth place was extremely close with Ben Erceg and Dave Mussell edging past Daryl Nissen and Andrew Harness on the final section after Nissen, who looked on track to take out the event in the first half, failed to finish and dropped down to fifth behind Erceg.

Click here for the full results from the event.

Erceg and Mussell may have missed out on a podium, but they still managed to pick up a class victory with the duo winning the Sportslite class. The seventh placed Dean Carter and Brad Jacob took out the Pro-Buggy Class.

With an all-star cast of South Australian off road drivers taking part in the event, there were a fair few casualties amongst the big names, which ultimately had an impact on the result, including 2018 AORC runner-up Toby Whateley, 2020 Gotcha Glass Wynarka Enduro winner Brad Gallard, Brett Rogers and David Hall.

Early on the event, Whateley and Gallard were both contending for the lead against Nissen and each won a heat before they both retired on the penultimate heat, while Rogers and Hall’s strong starts to the event were cut short after not but being able to make it past the second heat of the day.

Other classes saw Hadyn and Neil Vanstone rewarded for their top 10 finish with Super 1650 class honours and the 11th place Roger Cox win Extreme 2WD after being the only one to finish. Heath Weedon and Aaron Bowering came away as Production 4WD class winners after finishing 13th outright.

The next major off road event to take place in South Australia will be next month’s Can-Am Loveday 400 which will run as Motorsport Australia Central East Cup.