HELL OF A WIN Davie ends his horrific year on a high note
G R E AT S P O R T S I N C E 1 8 6 3
SAM Davie has overcome a ‘‘year from hell’’ to win the Black Diamond Drilling Kalgoorlie Desert Race.
Competing against 85 buggies and motorbikes from around the country, 27-year-old Davie won the threesection, 125km race with a time of 3hr, 47min, 54 seconds.
Davie’s time was nearly five minutes faster than second-placed Jacob Charles Smith.
It is the Echuca-born Husqvarna Desert Race Team member’s maiden win of 2018.
Earlier in the year, Davie suffered a race-ending injury in the Finke Desert Race in the Northern Territory in June; and a 19th place finish at the Hattah Race in Mildura a month later.
Davie said he felt it was just deserts for his gruelling efforts and determination in what had otherwise been a horrific year.
‘‘It has been a year from hell for us (Husqvarna Desert Race Team),’’ Davie said.
‘‘I’ve been battling with a couple of injuries, and was witness to one of my best mates dying in a race earlier in the year.
‘‘To have this win has been a bit of a relief; it’s been small things that have been our downfall in so many cases this year,’’ he said.
Getting out to the Kalgoorlie race was a mission in itself for Davie and friend Darcy Chaplin, who drove the nearly 2800km each way.
‘‘Driving over last week, we had a day out riding in WA just to give the bikes a shakedown, and then it was into scrutineering on Friday and the two-day race on Saturday and Sunday.
‘‘We’ve been in desert races before — and they are remote — but thankfully this time we had helicopters circle around and follow you just in case.
‘‘On Saturday morning I was first out at 6am and came across a couple of groups of cattle and kangaroos along the way.
‘‘You kind of just deal with it as it happens, you just have to be aware and know that it can happen,’’ he said.
Chaplin finished 17th overall after coming off his bike during a section, and managed to finish the race relatively unscathed.
‘‘(Kalgoorlie) we’ve had down as one we wanted to win for a fair bit. 1 Northern Hwy, Echuca Ph: 5480 7150 We’ve known it’s coming all year, and after the Finke and Hattah we started getting back into training about three or four months ago,’’ Davie said.
‘‘I knew going into the third stage that I had about a three or four-minute lead, so I knew if no one passed me I had it in the bag.
‘‘I pushed a bit at the start and made a few small mistakes but got away with it and rode it home from there.’’
The Kalgoorlie win marks the end of Davie’s 2018 season.
He will now rest and recuperate until mid-January when training for the Finke will begin once more.
DESERT STORM: Sam Davie clinched his first victory of 2018 at the Black Diamond Drilling Kalgoorlie Desert Race. Photo: