Rally Of Canberra  2002

Well another Rally of Canberra has been run and won and what an event it turned out to be - there were many internationals who came to the Nation’s capital.

Anyway once again the Mullets were in charge of  the Spectator Points and Flash was the Chief Spectator Marshal, with RD and Effie as Spectator Point Managers.

Things got underway on Wednesday when Flash and Mum arrived. It was straight from the Airport to Saturday's main point at Kowen Settlement. Kowen had been changed since last year and now used the cross over that was at EPIC, and looked like being a great point. It also included the days service area. From there we moved to Sundays point at Bluetts and met RD and looked at what had to be done before heading out to the Mineshaft. (Problem 1) On arrival at the mineshaft we found that there was a 2 tonne concrete block in the middle of what should be the Spectator Crossing, and do you think we could move it, NO, we had about 6 of us trying to shift the bloody thing, but it would not move.

(Thursday) We at least had some sort of a sleep in, but once we were up we went straight to Bluetts to finish of the webbing and sort out any other little problems that we had to. It was then onto the Mineshaft again and, guess what, the concrete block was still in the way, so with a bit of Mullet thinking we created the gates around it. We then headed on the New Bobs and looked at that, luckily everything had been done. It was then Back to Rally HQ to see if we could get anyone to move the block and sort out little bits and pieces. Once we had finished up it was off to dinner and another Tram Ride (you have to be there).

(Friday) Now things were became serious - the rally getting underway from the city centre at about 9 o'clock. Today saw RD and Wedge on New Bobs and Effie and myself at the Mineshaft. Effie and I met our marshals at the Cotter Pub before heading off to put them in place, and you would not believe it, after all the problems we had 2 yrs ago we actually had enough marshals to run the point, and, the block had been moved. The spectators started to roll in, unfortunately from the organisers point of view the crowds were down on last year, but for those that did make the trip out they were not let down. On the first run, Car 8, which was one of the Internationals in the Hyundai Accent WRCar slid wide and hit a tree just round the corner from the Mineshaft, but still in the point, and lost a heap of time as we tried to get him out. As normal Simon Evans was huge off the top and therefore he grabs the prize for the biggest jump.

RD and Wedge had trouble of their own when they got more spectators than the organisers thought and ended up having to make the area bigger.

(Saturday) saw us all out at the new Kowen Settlement. Unfortunately this was an earlier morning than the last few. Today Effie was in charge. Everything seemed to run smoothly with not many problems apart from the normal spectators in the wrong place and a marshal that passed out from the heat and had to be taken to hospital via an ambo, and of course the Media trying to cross the road in unsafe places.Today was the biggest day and it saw around 2000-3000 people spread throughout  the whole area including the service park and that’s not to mention the corporates who had their own area. For those that turned out they were treated to some great action, as you could see the start of the stage, the tunnel and jump in the cross-over and all the action of the service park.

Once again we had to roll up all the mesh after the days end and then headed back to rally HQ to pick up batteries for Sunday and then off for another Tram Ride.

(Sunday) Once again saw us all in the one spot out at the all new Bluetts Pine Plantation. This was a great spot and had been set up like Bunnings in Perth for Rally OZ. You could see the drivers down one side of a valley before dissappearing into the forest before they came back out and came up and along the road in front of you. RD was the man in charge today. Problems were on the top of the menu today as things went wrong from the word go. On arrival the helicopter landing pad had been moved from its original spot in order to make a bus turning area, that was OK until you then had spectators getting off the bus and walking down the road while trying not to be hit by Corporate cars which were allowed to drive in. RD seemed to find himself a shadow which followed him around all day. He went by the name of Bluetts 3 and was in charge of road closures up at William Hovel,  Coppins, Cotter and Uriarra, and he wanted to relive his people with our marshals. After RD told him no that was not our responsibility he then started to tell RD how to do his job and tell us how to talk on the radios etc. Luckily Flash came to the rescue and got rid of him before RD had a chance to tell him really where to go. Then because of the great weather Canberra turned on, we had a heap of spectators turn up, which is out of the ordinary as it was a Sunday. This was not a problem until rally cars, buses, corporate cars and people started to all come down and use the one access road at the one time. As you can imagine this caused night mares, but after some quick Mullet thinking we were able to sort the problem out.

Apart from that everything ran pretty “smoothly” with things finishing up about 2 o'clock for the live cross to RPM. After once again rolling up the mesh, it was back home for a much deserved shower and rest before the pathetic effort and excuse for an after party. You could say it was good if you liked Hotdogs on stale buns and beers ( No offence Hot Dog Mullet I’m sure if you catered it would have been great. Maybe we can recommend that for next year).  But when you have it on a licensed premises that under 18’s can not enter and half the people who worked all weekend end up out side it is not a good situation.

Other than that the event turned out to be great and most importantly once again the Mullets could put their name to another great Subaru Rally of Canberra


Horney Mullet