New round, new leader for AORC

The standings for the Polaris Motorsport Australia Off Road Championship (AORC) have been finalised and it’s a new driver sitting atop of the summit.

Having made his long-awaited return to the AORC this year, West Australian Travis Robinson is the new championship leader thanks to two podiums from the first two races this year.

A third place in March’s Markwell Group Gold City 450 was followed by a runner-up at last month’s Wentworth Shire Pooncarie Desert Dash, elevating the popular driver to top of the class and with a healthy 68-point lead.

While Robinson sits clear at the top of the standings, it’s very close between the chasing pack with round one winner James Cook sitting in second place ahead of round two winner Raana Horan.

Only two points separate the two round winners after Cook failed to finish a race for the first time in Pooncarie, but still scored starting points, while Horan only took part in Pooncarie meaning he got no extra points for Gold City.

A similarly disappointing second section for reigning champion Ryan Taylor in Pooncarie saw him drop the order, however the Queenslander was able to recover nicely and bank some important points towards his title defence – a P28 solidifying fourth place a further three points off Horan.

Rounding out the top five just three points behind the reigning champion is Glenn Brinkman with the Queenslander the only other driver outside of Robinson to have finished inside the top 10 for both races.

Photos: Dan Thompson

View the outright standings here.

In addition to Brinkman’s impressive outright season tally, he also comfortably leads the SXS Pro class, with Kye Camilleri a distant 240 points behind in second place.

Just like the outright championship pointscore, it’s far closer between a collection of crews battling it out for second place with 18 points separating Camilleri, reigning class champion James Cook and James Mogford.

View the SXS Standings here.

In the other classes, South Australian Mel Brandle, who sits sixth on the outright standings courtesy of a maiden AORC podium, has moved to the top of the Prolite class – sharing that honour with Ally Howells after her class win in Townsville.

A far-from-straightforward overall finish in Pooncarie saw Brett Comiskey elevated to the top of the Extreme 2WD class, leapfrogging round one winner Nicholas Commins in the standings after the latter had a number of issues at Pooncarie.

After getting his Toyota Landcruiser in shape in between rounds after completing the Gold City 450 in the Extreme 4WD class, Adam Jiear made the move back into the Production 4WD class and picked up the class win in Pooncarie as a result.

View the AORC class leaders here.

The 2023 Polaris Motorsport Australia Off Road Championship continues next month with the Tatts Finke Desert Race on 9-12 June.