LAND­SLIP 4x4 TRIAL

THE LAND­SLIP, NEAR GORE COULD HAVE BEEN PUR­POSE­BUILT FOR 4X4 TRI­ALS. PHO­TOG­RA­PHER CHRIS WAT­SON WAS THERE TO CHRON­I­CLE THE 2016 EVENT.

NZ4WD - - CONTENTS - Story by Daniel Richard­son Photos by Chris Wat­son, Pro Fo­cus.

On Novem­ber 12 last year I went along to the South­ern Trail Blazers 4WD Club’s an­nual Land­slip 4x4 rally at Puk­erau in South­land to mar­shal for the day. Hav­ing al­ways com­peted for many years it was def­i­nitely a change for me.

Af­ter the usual scru­ti­neer­ing checks and driv­ers’ brief­ing the ac­tion started. The course I was mar­shalling started with an off-cam­ber drop into a boggy ditch with a short run down the ditch which com­peti­tors had to climb back out to the fin­ish.

Great en­ter­tain­ment

This course turned out to be sur­pris­ingly easy in the morn­ing but was start­ing to change by lunch time. Other cour­ses like the speed course pro­vided great en­ter­tain­ment for the crowd of spec­ta­tors with driv­ers en­cour­ag­ing each other to push that lit tle more re­sult­ing in a few rollovers.

At the lunch break, there were plenty of ve­hi­cles be­ing re­paired and ev­ery­one had good chance to have a catch up and tell sto­ries of how their day was go­ing.

Once the ac­tion kicked off again the first truck into my course was two young guys in their mod­i­fied Suzuki. Af­ter dis­cussing their plan of at­tack, they pulled up to the start pegs, brought the en­gine up to the red­line and dropped the clutch.

Big smiles

The Suzuki took off about four me­tres be­fore drop­ping the left wheels into the ditch and tip­ping over hard on the pas­sen­ger side dam­ag­ing the body work. How­ever, once re­cov­ered, and with big smiles on their faces the young fel­las were off to the next course.

While some driv­ers took the drive-it-like-you-stole-it ap­proach oth­ers – like Mike McCarthy – drove very tech­ni­cally, mak­ing the course look easy.

Mike’s was in fact the only ve­hi­cle to achieve the zero for the af­ter­noon.

Mar­shalling for the day un­for­tu­nately meant I didn’t get to see all the cour­ses but what I did see, and the feed­back from driv­ers/ nav­i­ga­tors was that it was a great course and ev­ery­body was en­joy­ing them­selves.

An ex­cel­lent day put on by the South­ern Trail Blazers 4WD Club.

Blair Pope push­ing his Jeep hard in one of the many mud­bogs.

Mike McCarthy & Tom Hayes of Dunedin stuck fast.

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