After a disastrous start at the season opener, Josh Howells and Gordon Tardrew bounced back in the second round of the Polaris Motorsport Australia Off Road Championship and led the way through day one yesterday.
In their Nissan V6 Twin Turbo-powered Jimco Pro Buggy, they had a scare in the beginning of the Wentworth Shire Pooncarie Desert Dash in NSW with a minor technical glitch.
The Howells' went on to win the 9.4 kilometre Prologue by a scant 1.2s before they relished the less dusty conditions out in front and took a one minute plus victory in the first of four 105 kilometre laps.
“It was a good start and we put in a nice clean lap to keep a bit of a gap between second place,” Howells said.
Reigning champions Ryan Taylor and Kye Floyd (Cadillac V6 Twin Turbo-powered Tatum AK47 Pro Buggy) were second after they were marginally beaten in the Prologue.
Third in the initial sprint, and the next ones to cross the line were Travis Robinson and Andrew Pinto (Jimco/Nissan V6 TT) but they were relegated to fourth with a quicker run by New Zealanders Raana Horan and Michael Connor (Jimco/Nissan V6 TT).
Behind the four Pro Buggys which were covered by two minutes and 13s was the first of the ProLites with Mel Brandle (Alumi Craft/Nissan V6) in fifth place, and ahead of another three South Australian Pro Buggys in Daniel and Charlotte Hughes, Brett Rogers/Brett Richardson, and John and Dave Morgan.
James Cook and Mitchell Aucote (Can-Am) finished ninth and led SXS Pro while eleventh placed Brett Comiskey and Corey Cooper (Geiser/Chev) were the Extreme 2WD front runners.
In 29th place, Eden Evans and Max O'Brien (Polaris) headed SXS Sport.
In front in Production 4WD were Adam and Mitchell Jiear (Toyota) and likewise David Adams (Desert Rat) in Sportslite.
The first section also saw several DNFs.
The Garry and Tamara Turnbull Jimco stopped just six kilometres from the finish, and Toby Whateley and Simon Hermann had their Ext 2WD Rush Truck stop 26 kilometres from the end.
The event continues with crews to tackle three further laps of the long course.