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Albins ARB Goondiwindi Ready for Battle
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Wednesday, 19 August 2020
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Source: Toby Cooper

In the unexpected and challenging world we are currently experiencing, once thing is for sure that this weekend’s Goondiwindi 400 will put smiles on faces of all in attendance. Due to the closing of the New South Wales border and the heartbreak across Victoria, this year’s edition will see Queensland’s best line up for the traditional 400 brutal kilometres which will serve as a round of the 2020 Mickey Thompson Off Road AORRA QLD Championship.

With 2019 podium getters Bryce Chapman #58 who stole victory by 2 seconds over Jason Richards #119 and Aaron Haby #57 all unable to attend due to COVID restrictions alongside 2018 Champion Danny Brown #42 and 2017 victor Aaron James #93, it opens the door for a new champion at one of Australia’s toughest races.

Talbot Cox #16 will once again spearhead the 66 strong Goondiwindi field, after dominating the past two year’s prologue dashes, and leading at the overnight break it will take a game man to back against the North Queenslander. Cox will not have it his own way though, with an abundance of outright contenders set to throw their name down for the title. Recent Dalby and Moranbah winner Clayton Chapman #15 returns in career best form and will be eager to showcase his class on the famed circuit, Ryan Taylor #24 will be another chasing long awaited Goondiwindi silverware, whilst Brett Comiskey #34 will greet the starter in the CMS Racing Unlimited Jimco fresh off an outright victory at Inglewood.

Young gun Troy Duff #124 has been super quick since he took ownership of his Class 1 Jimco 2000, and there is no reason why he can’t go all the in 2020. Tony Fehlhaber #138 is another who regularly punches above his weight at Goondiwindi with many spirited performances; both he and Duff have all the gear and skill to take them to the podium celebrations. Andrew Murphy #131 will make his first appearance in his Alumni Craft and will be ready to make some noise.

Goondiwindi has had a strong connection with high flying Class 4 trophy trucks with the success of Brad Gallard over the years, this year will be no exception. Local legend and President Jamie Knight #439 will lead the pack, the ever consistent campaigner will look to continue his astonishing record on home soil, Goondiwindi regular Paul Youman #427 is always entertaining and will be searching for a strong finish. An interesting entry is that of Paul Weel #450 who has taken purchase of an ex Toby Price TT; Weel who does a lot of racing in the States will be one to keep an eye on early in proceedings. Justin Montesalvo #484, Steven Kildey #412 and Campbell Smith #499 should all enjoy the Gundy terrain.

Jason Keane #1013 and Benjamin Duff #1011 are the sole Class 10 representatives, Russell Hartnett #245 and local Michael Phillips #242 lock horns in the Class 2 battle, whilst Michael Ranson #507 and Stuart Chapman #520 do likewise in Class 5. Class 3 will be once again fiercely contested with Steve Orr #351, Taylor Teichmann #364 and Aaron Nicoll #305 all set to duel for the top honours.

Amy Chapman #730 headlines the Class 7 competitors alongside Ethan Murray #725 and Luke Peterson #717, whilst the ever exciting Class 8 showdown is led by last year’s Champion Christian Trusz #816 – he will have to overcome Luke McNicol #865, Darren Orr #826 and Ross Challacombe #838 for back to back titles. John Wisse #6656 and Mitchell Cross #6669 headline the Class 66 field.

The ever popular Class 6 field is once again one to watch this weekend, as it continues to grow in size, with this year attracting 27 competitors. In 2018 Jeff McNiven #604 denied the odds to finish fourth outright at the gruelling event, so maybe 2020 is the year of the SXS at Goondiwindi. McNiven returns this weekend alongside 2019 podium sitters Sybrand De Klerk #652 who is always entertaining, Robert Scott #606 and Ryan Jones #612 who will both be looking to reach the top step in 2020. The most intriguing entry in the field is arguably that of Toby Price #687 who will pilot the Toby Price Motorsport Can Am for the first time at Goondiwindi; definitely one to keep a close eye on as the weekend progresses. Others to watch out for include young up and comer Brayden Mifsud #626 who is improving by each outing, Greg Gualandi #607, Michael Zacka #613 and the Swinglehurst brothers Thomas #610 and Jake #646 who are both showing some serious potential.

A weekend in Goondiwindi alongside the famous Malapunyah run is like no other; one where competitors endure 400km of brutal, harsh melon hole terrain in their quest to the checkered flag. Despite no interstate competitors in 2020, the prestigious Goondiwindi silverware is there for the taking and this year’s edition poses as one of the most hotly contested edition yet, in a time where the extraordinary is the new norm.

Stay up to date with live results across the weekend on offroadracing.com.au!