State News: Agrela holds on for Bencubbin victory

The CAMS Western Australian Off Road Championship has witnessed a thrilling conclusion to the famous Marsue Transport Bencubbin 400 as Darren Agrela claimed a famous one-second victory over Troy Schoen.

With 39 crews taking part in the three-section event, the competition came down to the wire as Agrela held on to his victory after a frantic final section.

It was a two horse race for the whole event as Argela drew first blood and took on a 33 second lead at the end of the first three laps.

The Jimco pilot then extended the lead to over a minute at the end of the second section as Schoen continued to build on the gap between he and Jared Percival in third place.

During the third and final section, Agrela began to face mechanical problems and was forced to conserve his engine as Schoen overtook him and went to make up the lost time.

Putting everything into those final laps, Schoen put on a gallant display and got extremely close in the process as spectators believed he had won when he crossed the line, only for Agrela finish with one second spare.

Following on from the memorable victory, a relieved Agrela was thrilled his new-engine car managed to hold on for the victory.

“We were really lucky to win. One minute you think you have it easy and then things can change very quickly,” Agrela said.

“We had it in the bag with two laps to go, but the engine temp went up so we did the best we could without cooking the motor and held on for grim death.

“Everyone thought I had won after the second section but with more than 140kms to go, anything was possible.

“We thought we had more time than we did when Troy went past. We thought around 30 seconds but it was more like 12 and we couldn’t really do much because we had to conserve the engine temperature.

“I was rapt that I was in front but heartbroken when we had the problems. My co-driver was asking if should pull over but I told him ‘we’re not coming second, stuff it, I don’t care. We’re either going to break or we are going to win’.

“I couldn’t believe we had won in the end. It was brilliant. But as I said in the presentation, if was going to lose to someone, I’m glad it could have been Troy.”

Rounding out the podium almost 10 minutes behind was entertaining battle was Percival and Darryn Beckett, the duo also claiming the Prolite class win in the process.

Eighth placed Gavin Rodgers and Latia Reeves took out the SXS Turbo Class, while the 12th placed Peter Barrett and Craig Carson took out the Sportslite class.

Jason Galea and Keira Piercy took out the SXS Sport class, as Peer Horn and Sean Beck rounded out the top 15 with an Extreme 4WD win.

In other classes, Peter Mellington and Michael French won the Super1650 class, Kent Dunham the Extreme 2WD, Graeme Bentick and Dylan James the Production 4WD and the Performance 2WD class went to Matthew Beck and Jade Armstrong.

Click here to view the full results.

The next round of the CAMS Western Australian Off Road Championship is the Mid West Challenge in Eganu on 17-18 August.