Rally ‘best in Southern Hemisphere’ says Nathan Quinn

Two of Australia’s best rally drivers are both convinced that the Bega Valley Rally is the best in the country. 

A first-time experience for Australian champ Nathan Quinn, the professional driver posted on social media Saturday night. 

“I’m going to say it...Bega shire stages are the best in the Southern Hemisphere,” Quinn’s post reads. 

Meanwhile, NSW champion Bryan Van Eck considered the Bega Valley Rally his spiritual “home track I guess you could say.”, going on to say that his parents lived in Cobargo for about 25 years. 

Now based out of Sydney and driving the same Altezza that helped him to the state title, Van Eck said the Valley Rally was one of few he would contest this year. 

“These are the very best roads in Australia to compete on,” he said. “I won’t be doing many events this year because my son is in Year 12 and the focus is elsewhere, but I made sure to be here for this, it’s the best.”

With stages still being contended into Sunday afternoon, organiser Kim Boyd said it was a testament to the Far South Coast surrounds and returning the Shire Road stages there has been so much growth. 

Almost 60 cars started this year, a jump of more than 20 entries from previous and significantly more than major stages in both Canberra and Adelaide recently. 

“To get bigger numbers than those events is pretty insane,” Mr Boyd said. 

Results are yet to be finalised, but Bega favourite Ben Barker was blitzing the stages on Saturday. 

Van Eck and Quinn were both also incredibly fast, while Peter Neal and Craig Whyburn were holding pace in their Subaru Impreza, but said they were dealing with some clutch concerns. 

Kalaru mechanic Lee Manning was having a good run, but unfortunately snapped a control bar during stage four just north of Eden.