Cody Crocker has enjoyed a dream return to the Kincrome SXS Motorsport Australia Championship after winning the season opener in Rainbow.
Contesting the new-look championship alongside Greg Foletta, the three-time RSEA Safety Motorsport Australia Rally Champion proved too strong for the 15 other crews throughout the round, which saw competitors complete two 100km races.
With crews split into groups for their first race, and then as one together for the final race, Crocker and Foletta claimed top honours after producing the most laps in the shortest amount of time.
Their combined race time of two hours and 26 minutes was just enough to secure the win over championship veteran Stephen Henry, who began his current bid for a title with a well-deserved second place alongside Steve Walton.
Rounding out the podium behind the second placed duo were Trevor Finck and Tyler Fitzgerald, who crossed the line a further second minutes behind.
It’s been a while since Crocker last raced in the championship, and even longer since he won a round – his last victory coming towards the end of the 2018 season.
“It’s great to be back in the car,” Crocker said post-race.
“The car and the race format were on point today and it was cool to come away with this Kincrome spanner trophy.
“It was great to put the band back together with Greg Foletta as my co-driver.”
Reigning champion Jackson Evans and his co-driver Claudia Evans suffered a mechanical issue during the first race, before improving significantly in the second race to go fastest – but it was too little too late as he had to settle for fourth place.
Evans’ younger sister Eden managed to pick up a class win in her official SXS debut, guiding her Polaris to 10th place outright and the SXS Sport win with the assistance of co-driver Shannons Jennings.
Having watched her father win the outright title in 2018 and brother in 2019, the 23-year-old was eagerly waiting the chance to make her debut in the championship.
“It was fantastic to finally get my first event under my belt and to come away with a trophy was a big bonus,” Eden said.
“There were just so many changing conditions out there during the day and I learnt so much, including how to drive with mud all over my visor.
“My goal today was just to finish and we did that and managed to come away with a gold Kincrome spanner was very cool.”
The next round of the 2021 Kincrome SXS Motorsport Australia Championship season takes place in Alice Springs on 17 April.
Round 1 results
1: Cody Crocker/Greg Foletta: 18 Laps – 2:25.16.5
2: Steve Henry/Steve Walton: 18 Laps – 2:27.21.7
3: Trevor Finck/Tyler Fitzgerald: 18 Laps – 2:29.49.9
4: Jackson Evans/Claudia Evans – 18 Laps – 2:32.03.9
5: Nathan Wiesel/Anthony Harris: 16 Laps
6: Chris Collins/Erica Savage: 16 Laps
7: Simon Evans/Max O’Brien: 16 Laps
8: MollyTaylor/Daniel Gardner: 16 Laps
9: Mathew Keene/Jack Keeble: 14 Laps
10: Eden Evans/Shannon Jennings: 13 Laps
11: Andrew Daniel/ Brayden Kendrick: 11 Laps
12: Jake Williams/Kevin Williams: 9 Laps
13: James Cook/ Mitch Aucote: 8 Laps
14: Paul Borg/Sebastian Borg: 3 Laps
15: Tom Evans/Samual Horrocks: 3 laps
16: Alex Handley/Jack Battye: 1 lap