Midstate Freight Bathurst Rally
September 23, 2023

Supplementary Regulations

Spectator Instructions

Service Instructions

Click for a list of entries

Click for a walk around the Service Park

Forty-six cars lined up in the centre of Bathurst on Saturday, September 23, in perfect weather for the Midstate Freight Bathurst Rally, the third round or the 2023 NSW Rally Championship. The event had been run around Oberon for the last few years but was moved to Bathurst this year to take advantage of accommodation and commercial support.

The service area for the event was in Russell Street outside the courthouse, allowing spectators easy access to see the work being done on the cars between stages. Spectators were also well served by spectator points at Carcoar (where the cars did a short run on a sealed road) and Macquarie Woods.

The rally used a mixture of shire and forest roads, giving competitors a good mixture of conditions.

The roads around Carcoar, Blayney and Bathurst hadn't been used in a rally for some years, so they were new to many of the competitors. Apart from dust the roads were in perfect condition, and this was reflected in the small number of retirements (7), mostly caused by drivers becoming over enthusiastic while enjoying the high speeds that the roads allowed. Apart from one incident the medical team had a quite day but even in that incident nobody was hurt, although the rally was delayed for a short time until the competitors involved could be given the all clear.

The event was won rather convincingly by 2017 Australian Rally Champion Nathan Quinn and Ray Winwood-Smith in a Hyundai I20. As they were the fastest on all eleven stages they would have been hard to beat. The win would have been even more satisfying for Winwood-Smith as his Kelso company, Midstate Freight, was the naming rights sponsor of the rally. Second place went to Josh Redhead and Holly Kilbride in a Mitsubishi Lancer GSR (second fastest on all eleven stages), with Richie Dalton and Dale Moscatt taking the third spot on the podium in their Toyota Yaris.

Despite the dusty conditions, there was enough breeze during the day to clear the air between cars so the only people with anything to complain about were spectators and photographers trying to keep the dust out of their cameras, but as these conditions are part of the game there was more joking than complaining.

The rally was organised by North Shore Sporting Car Club, with Jon Thomson acting as Clerk of the Course. Both have long experience in running rallies and this was shown in the excellent choice of roads and spectator points. There were a couple of hitches during the day with equipment and missing officials but nothing that would have been noticed by either competitors or spectators, again a sign of experienced organisers.

The Bathurst rally looks like being a permanent part of the NSW Rally Championship in future years and is a worthy successor to the Oberon rallies of the past few years.

Click to see t
he action in Stage 2

Click to see the action in Stage 6

Click to see the results

A report on the rally appeared in the Western Advocate on September 28, 2023

North Shore Sporting Car Club's site can be found here.

Copyright © 2016- Peter Bowditch

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