This Saturday lunchtime, Cooma Car Club is hosting and providing lunch for the 138 participants and cars taking part in the Repco Reliability Retrial 2019. This 40th anniversary event is open to pre-1980 cars and includes some of the original drivers and cars.
On this second last stage of the retrial, cars will be arriving from both the Monaro Highway, and a trial stage originating in Goulburn, through Braidwood, along the Old Cooma Road, through Numeralla and along the Numeralla Road to Cooma.
Cooma Car Club members will be providing the stage ending control with a time clock at the Car Club clubhouse.
The now-legendary 1979 Repco Reliability Trial was a two-week hell trek of around 20,000km around Australia. Starting and finishing in Melbourne, the Trial went to Adelaide, the Flinders Ranges, Perth, Darwin, Cairns, Brisbane and Sydney. Testament to the toughness and unrelenting pace of the event was the fact that most of the 167 starters failed to finish and just 13 cars completed the entire course correctly. Peter Brock who was at the height of his success as an Australian Touring Car Championship driver but was not really rated as a rally driver – silenced his doubters by winning in what he rated as the greatest victory of his life. With crew Matthew Philip and Noel Richards, he was first across the line in an astonishing 1-2-3 clean sweep in Holden’s then-new and factory-backed VB Commodore.
Fourth place was rally ace Ross Dunkerton, with Peter McKay and Geoff Jones in a Volvo 244, and the other car that made up the top five was the Ford Cortina of Greg Carr, Dave Morrow and Fred Gocentas.
The 2019 celebration event is not – it cannot! – be a repeat of the blazing two-week 1979 event. Instead it is a 28-day event (24 days driving with four rest days spent in Perth, Darwin and Cairns), with special stages, visiting many of the original destinations and over the same roads as the 1979 course.
The event is open to pre-1980 two-wheel-drive cars with unlimited modifications/preparation.
BEST PLACES TO SEE THE CARS & MEET THE DRIVERS
Location: Cooma Car Club Clubhouse, 11 Bolaro Street, Cooma NSW
Date/Time: Saturday 31 August 2019, anticipated to be from 12 noon onwards
Location: Numeralla (trial stage cars passing though)
Date/Time: Saturday 31 August 2019, from about 12 noon