Last time out at the Finke Desert Race

The next stop for the BFGoodrich Motorsport Australia Off Road Championship (AORC) will be the Tatts Finke Desert Race, and it doesn’t seem that long since the championship ventured out to the Northern Territory for the famous event.

Ahead of this year’s race, looks back at last year’s event, which was notable for many reasons.

Toby Price was deservedly crowned as a three-time King of the Desert on four wheels after a trouble-free run to Aputula and back up to Alice Springs.

After coming into the race a little unprepared, the Queenslander and his American navigator Jason Duncan crossed the line in first place more than six minutes ahead of veterans Greg Gartner and Jamie Jennings in second place.

Rounding out the podium was Travis Robinson and Andrew Pinto, who would eventually go on to win the AORC title at the next round.

The journey to Finke was rough for many drivers and teams, but once again, Price showcased his timeless talent behind the wheel of his Trophy Truck and proved why he is a deserving three-time champion.

Price and Duncan’s perfect weekend started in Method Race Wheels Prologue when they took out top spot over Beau Robinson and Shane Hutt by two seconds.

Beau and Hutt ended up having a troubling first section after battling multiple mechanical issues throughout, which saw them drop down the order by the time they reached Finke, with Gartner and Jennings, as well as their OBR teammates Travis and Pinto, getting ahead.

On the way back up to Alice Springs, Price and Duncan’s trouble-free run continued as they charged home to secure a third consecutive victory in emphatic fashion.

Behind them, Gartner and Jennings also had a comfortable run back up to Alice Springs to secure the runner-up finish.

Although the top two positions were fairly straight forward, the fight for the final podium spot was nothing short of dramatic. Travis and Pinto crossed the finish line a mere 11 seconds ahead of Brent Martin and Andre De Simone, who pushed them to the very last stages of the race.

One of the best performers of the day was the second Robinson in Beau, who overcame his issues in Race Day 1 to make up multiple positions and post the third fastest time of the day, going only slower than Gartner and Price. His outstanding performance led him to finish in fifth place.

In the class fights, Price and Duncan unsurprisingly won the Extreme 2WD class and Travis and Pinto took out the Pro Buggy class. Although they missed out on an outright podium, Martin and De Simone didn’t leave Finke empty-handed, as they took home Prolite class honours.

James Cook and Mitchell Aucote claimed first place in the Transportable Shade Sheds SXS Motorsport Australia Championship, while John White and Jack Briggs topped the SXS Sport class.

The Production 4WD class was claimed by American Brad and Byam Lovell and the Extreme 4WD class was won by Phil Lovett and Luke Stanley.

Rounding out the class winners were Sam Bentley and Hannah Bentley in Sportslite, and Super 1650 winners Brad Geraghty and Courtney Geraghty.

View the full results from the 2023 event.

The 2024 Tatts Finke Desert Race serves as the second round of this year’s BFGoodrich Motorsport Australia Off Road Championship and takes place in Alice Springs and Aputula on 7-10 June.