Rally legend wishes Southern Cross Gold Anniversary Rally well
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Rally legend wishes Southern Cross Gold Anniversary Rally well

By Shannons - 12 September 2016
Six time Southern Cross International Rally winner Andrew Cowan. (Photo courtesy of Ray Berghouse).

Six times winner of the Southern Cross rally and the greatest long distance rally driver of all time Andrew Cowan has expressed regret that he cannot be at November’s Southern Cross Gold Anniversary Rally.

Speaking from his farm in Scotland the six time Southern Cross Rally winner said: “I am very sorry that I cannot be with you but my thoughts will be! 

“How can I ever forget my times on the ‘Cross? Evan Green whom I got to know on the London Sydney Marathon in 1968 invited me to drive Tony Fall’s Morris 1800 marathon car in the 1969 ‘Cross. We won with Dave Johnson navigating and the rest is history – five wins for Mitsubishi between 1972 and 1976.

“The most important thing that I have as a result of the Southern Cross Rally is the massive circle of friends that I now have in Australia and those who have visited me in Scotland over the years; Colin and Robyn Bond, Bob Riley who I worked closely with during the Ralliart years, a great mate, Bob Watson, David Johnson, Jim Reddiex, John Bryson, Bruce Hodgson, also a great guy, Dinta and Kate Officer, Freddy Gocentas of course, but most of all Ralliart Australia chief Doug Stewart and his family”.

Andrew Cowan won both major London to Sydney marathons, driving a Hillman Hunter in 1968 and a Mercedes Benz in 1977.

Andrew Cowan with navigator Dave Johnson after winning his first of six Southern Cross rallies in 1969 driving an Austin 1800. (Photo courtesy of Ray Berghouse).

The Southern Cross Gold Anniversary Rally is being organised to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the first Southern Cross event in 1966. It is organised by Australia’s leading Historic Rally club, the Historic Rally Association Inc, and will be held from 8-19 November.

Regulations for the event are available from the event web site, www.southerncrossanniversaryrally.com.au, or the Historic Rally Association web site www.hra.org.au

The course for November’s Southern Cross Gold Anniversary Rally covers 3000km from the start in Albury NSW to Coffs Harbour on the NSW north coast over 12 days. As well as revisiting the roads used in the 1966 and 1976 Southern Cross rallies, there are 40 timed competitive sections which include hill climbs, closed road forest stages, autocross tracks and khanacross courses.

Event Director Bob Watson, who recently completed the NSW section of the course, said: “The roads we have chosen in NSW will give competitors a real taste of the original Southern Cross forest roads, driven on by such stars as Roger Clark, Timo Makinen, Rauno Aaltonen, Harry Kallstrom and of course Andrew Cowan and will re-create the feeling of those original events”.

A highlight for competitors will be driving on some of the stages of Rally Australia, the final round of the FIA World Rally Championship being held around Coffs Harbour from 16-20 November this year.