Exactly one month remains until the Cobb & Co Hotel St George 399 gets the 2021 BFGoodrich Motorsport Australia Off Road Championship (AORC) underway and already 75 crews have confirmed their entry.
With early bird entries still being accepted until 26 February and final entries to be accepted by 5 March, the AORC season opener is on track to eclipse its current field record of 75, which was set in 2019.
And there are plenty of AORC heavy hitters already confirmed for the Queensland based event with reigning champions Mark and Matt Burrows confirmed to begin their title defence.
The Burrows will be joined by fellow 2019 podium getters in SXS Turbo class winner Roydn Bailey and veteran Greg Campbell – both of whom are running a SXS again.
Other big names entered in the fourth edition of the St George 399 and raring for a big 2021 is West Australian Beau Robinson, 2018 AORC runner-up Toby Whateley and young star Josh Howells with all three expecting to be in contention for the title this year.
Brett Comiskey leads the local Queensland charge and finally gets his chance to debut his new ride, steering nine-time AORC champion Shannon Rentsch’s former pro buggy.
Comiskey will enter the St George 399 full of confidence after winning last year’s Dam Buster 250 and while it was a smaller event with less than half of this year’s field, Comiskey’s pace in his new car was certainly enough to keep up and challenge the front runners of previous years.
Comiskey isn’t the only key figure from the Dam Buster 250 to be running in the main event, with Extreme 2WD driver and runner-up from the state event last year in Justin Montesalvo.
Every class will be in action next month too with plenty of crews featured in amongst the more popular ones such as Pro Buggies, Pro-Lite, Extreme 4WD and SXS Turbos – the latter boasting the largest field of the grid.
While there are still some notable competitors to enter the event, South East Queensland Off Road Racing Association (SEQORRA) President Kym Barber was ecstatic with the interest surrounding the event.
“When we first opened the entries earlier this month, we had no idea we were going to get so many people so quickly. It’s just fantastic to see,” Barber said.
“To think we have already have 75 crews entered, which is equal to our current record, gives me great confidence of how special this event and the championship as a whole will be.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if we got over 80 to be honest and it just goes to show how many people are craving competing at the national level again.
“I think it’s just such a great way to begin the Championship – especially since there are five rounds again. We can’t wait for next month.”
In a format that’s different to previous years, prologue will now take place on the Friday afternoon, before crews tackle two laps of the 80km course on the Saturday and complete the remaining three laps spread across two sections on Sunday.
Early bird entries to the popular event will close at 5pm on 26 February AEST, while any other interested crews have until Friday 5 March to enter the Cobb & Co Hotel St George 399.
The 2021 Cobb & Co Hotel St George 399 takes place in St George on 19-21 March.
Photo: Terry Hill Photography