Dr Stephen Gaggin, from Motor Sport Safety & Rescue, has been Chief Medical Officer on all except one COT – and he’ll be with us again for COT 2016 in Alice Springs. Let’s hear from him…
What’s your usual role on the COT? What do you do? What do you drive out there?
My usual role is to be Medical Officer on the safety team. We drive a 4×4, kitted out by Motorsport Safety and Rescue with trauma gear. We also add in a “GP” kit for the everyday things that may occur during the course of an event. Ideally, I get to do nothing more than enjoy the event – but the gear is all there if it’s needed.
Who will be traveling with you? What’s your history as a team?
I’ll be travelling with Chris Benjamin. Chris is a highly experienced paramedic currently with the Tasmanian Ambulance Service. Chris and I had done a number of ARC events together before pairing up (along with Wilson… long story) for the 2008 Red Center to Gold Coast event.
You’ve been an official on the COT before… what do you like about the event – what has bought you back?
Have been doing these events since the 1995 Round Australia… it’s the people who bring me back.
What are your expecting from the 2016 COT; what are you looking forward to?
Continuing the having a very quiet event… Chris and I would like to be team lazy dog.
Have you been to Alice Springs before? What are you expecting or looking forward to seeing?
Been there as part Round Australia and Red Centre to Gold Coast. Look forward to seeing the gorges again
What is your rallying and officiating background? How did you become part of the COT team?
Did my first event as a medical officer on a rally sport event in 1995… a Rally Tasmania. Since then I have done two Round Australias, all but one Classic Outback Trials, four Australian Safaris and I have lost count of the ARC and state rallies that I have done… All up, I think about 70 + events.
What is you most memorable COT moment – what sticks in your mind?
Chris and I playing barista in the RCTGC event… went through packets of those instant cappachinos
What is/was your favourite rally car?
A Renault Alpine than competed in several Rally Tasmanias… it kept blowing up on Day 2, but was as “sweet as”.
What is your most memorable rallying moment?
Beating Neil Bates across the line in Rally Melbourne…. We were towing him at the time but it makes a good story.
What will you be doing to get ready for the 2016 COT?
Making sure I get time off work!
Where are you, and what are you doing as you answer these questions?
Travelling back to Broken Hill from New Zealand to restart work.
Thanks Stephen – it will be great to have you with us in Alice Springs. And to explain to readers… “team lazy dog” does not suggest that Stephen and Chris will be “skiving off” in coffee shops – it’s a desire for a safe event where the MIVs have nothing to do! We fully agree…