Motorsport Safety & Rescue - October 2010 report

One of the biggest events on Motorsport Safety & Rescue’s calendar dominated the past month, with a long line up of events still to come as the year moves deeper into its final stages.

Quit Targa West is Western Australia’s biggest tarmac rally and once again it was a success in 2010. MSR attended a few incidents during the four-day event, but fortunately these incidents were only minor.

The team’s biggest job on the rally was when they attended a civilian accident after a local car hit a tree. The MSR medical team helped to ensure that there was a positive outcome to the crash.

Still in the west, the Australasian Safari followed in late September, with six crews working on what is widely known as the ‘Dakar Down Under’.

The seven day off-road event started in Perth and finished in Esperence eight days later after tackling some of the WA outback’s toughest, roughest and most demanding roads and tracks.

MSR provided six First Intervention Vehicles on the event, as well as a patient transport vehicle and a helicopter crew. Overnight medical services were also provided.

As expected in an event that includes cars and motorbikes, the team had a very busy time, with a number of helicopter evacuations for riders who had hit the ground hard.

These included at least three competitors who are now recovering after stints in hospital, and a driver in the auto category who suffered back injuries after a heavy landing in the sand dunes.

“From our point of view everything went really well and it was a successful event,” MSR’s Geoff Becker says.

“We had 20 people working on the event, and we really needed to be on top of our game. The Safari is a real tyranny of distance, but we managed it well.”

Because of the length of the event – covering over 3000km – it doesn’t allow the team to perform a pre-event reconnaissance of the route, so it is a real ‘take it as it comes’ rally.

But that’s one of the things that make the Australasian Safari such an attraction for everyone involved.

Over the next few weeks MSR will remain at the coalface with a host of events to cover.

Two crews will attend the Akademos Rally, a round of the Victorian Rally Championship, on October 17, while the following weekend another two teams will be at the Gil Davis Memorial Rally in Victoria. That weekend will also see a crew at a North West Car Club rally in Tasmania.

The first weekend in November sees the inaugural running of the newest Targa event – Targa High Country.  Based in north east Victoria, Targa High Country consists of eight competitive stages each day, heading north to Wangaratta via Whitfield on the Saturday, and to Eildon via Jamieson on Sunday. Each day will end with a 20 kilometre stage to the summit of Mt Buller. A five kilometre stage around the streets of Mansfield will kick off the event.

Eight MSR crews will be in attendance, and because of the interesting terrain in the high country area, Becker believes the event will provide plenty of challenges.

A full field of 225 cars will face the starter in what is the first multi-stage tarmac rally to be held in Victoria.

Just a week later, eight crews will be at the final round of the Australian Rally Championship, the all-new Rally Victoria. The event also counts as the final event on the Victorian Championship calendar.

The Cooper Memorial Rally follows in Victoria on November 27, before Becker heads to India to look at that country’s proposed round of the Asia-Pacific Rally Championship.

In their spare time (pun intended), MSR are being kept extremely busy with corporate work for a number of multi-national companies.