Announcement of COT18 – nominations now open

In formally announcing that the Classic Outback Trial will next be conducted during the period 18-25 August 2018, Event Promoter and Executive Chairman Phil Bernadou confirmed that Alice Springs will once again play host each night, following the a very successful 2016 event.

Now the only week-long competition event in Australia it will again be run under the auspices of the Confederation of Australian Motor Sport. Continue reading

Media, News

Rally crews take day off while Alice Springs cleans up

The Central Australian town of Alice Springs where the Classic outback Trial is based, was hit hard by freak weather on Friday afternoon, forcing the cancellation of the first days stages. Severe wind gusts carried in 63 mm of rain and an avalanche of hail that has flooded much of the town, brought down trees and cut off many roads. Roads crossing the normally dry Todd River are still underwater today allowing the locals and the crews to photograph the rare sight of a flooded Todd River, about the only redeeming feature for the rally crews, disappointed to miss the first days competition.

The Todd River is well and truly flowing after extraordinary rains

The Todd River is well and truly flowing after extraordinary rains

A spokesperson for the NTES said this afternoon that they had so far dealt with over 80 calls for assistance to clear fallen trees from houses and cars and to help clean up homes with flood damage and damage to roofs.

The Alice was turned white with the tonnes of hail that was dumped, and the hail damage has caused several roofs to collapse in town, including at the hospital and the Imparja TC studio. There are media reports that some parts of streets in the town had been under a metre of water.

The ABC news website has quoted the Bureau of Meteorology as saying that Alice Springs hasn’t had a severe storm with hail and flooding in June for the last 20 years.

Uprooted tree outside Alice Springs Town Council

Freak winds have uprooted trees and damaged rooves

Speaking shortly after the decision to cancel the first day’s competition was made, event director Phillip Bernadou speaking from Lasseters Hotel where the Rally is based said “We’re really disappointed for the competitors but the roads south of town are just impassable. We’re hoping that drying weather over the next few days will mean no more interruptions to the rally.”

The cancellation of the first days stages means crews have an extra day to prepare their cars and do final checks on fuel consumption and spares inventory. It also means they have a day to enjoy Alice Springs and surrounds as well as the Lasseters entertainment complex.  “Regrettable though it is, it is a great place for a day off.” observed a philosophical Bernadou.

The John Flynn Memorial Church in Todd Mall, was hit by a falling tree.

The John Flynn Memorial Church in Todd Mall, was hit by a falling tree.

The 2016 Classic outback Trial has attracted 52 rally crews in classic rally cars like Ford Mustangs, Porsche’s and Datsun 260Z’s, including 4 cars and crews from overseas.  Each rally crew will have the support of one or more service crews and the event itself will bring about 50 officials in from all over Australia. In total, at least 350 people associated with the Classic Outback Trial will be in Alice Springs for over a week.

The event runs from June 18 to 24 and starts and finishes each day at Lasseters in Alice Springs.


COT insider guide to The Red Centre

AAT Kings special offer

AATKings_logoAAT Kings are offering COT16 visitors and their families a great deal – Get 10% off these two best-selling Alice Springs Day Tours.

Alice Springs is Australia’s most famous outback town, situated in the heart of the Red Centre. There’s no better place to experience a taste of outback life than in this fascinating and isolated town.  Continue reading

COT insider guide to The Red Centre

Visit the home of Kangaroo Dundee! The Kangaroo Sanctuary at Alice Springs…

Brolga holding young male kangaroo

Brolga holding young male kangaroo

Enjoy a guided sunset tour to the home of Brolga and his kangaroo family as seen on ‘Kangaroo Dundee’ (BBC UK / National Geographic USA documentary). The Sanctuary is a 90 acre wildlife reserve and was the film location for the TV show Kangaroo Dundee.

Experience a leisurely walk through the bush as the kangaroos wake from their day-time sleep. Meet the characters of Kangaroo Dundee such as ‘mad as a cut snake’ Roger, Rex, Ruby and Bluey. The Sanctuary is a place to celebrate the beauty of the red kangaroo – an Australian icon. Continue reading

COT insider guide to The Red Centre

Alice on Todd Apartments offer COT16 visitors self contained accommodation

Alice on Tod logoAlice on Todd Apartments have offered COT16 visitors a great discount on their range of  self contained accommodation in Alice Springs.

Alice on Todd Apartments offer a choice of self contained studio, one bedroom and two bedroom apartments to suit all travelers’ needs and are situated across the Todd River from COT Rally Headquarters at Lasseters. Continue reading

COT insider guide to The Red Centre

Alice in the Territory – across the road from the COT16 service park

Alice in the Territory logoAlice in the Territory is very well located for COT16 – they’re across the road from the Alice Springs Convention Centre at Lasseters.

Plus, they offer a range of different accommodation styles, including family rooms for 4, 5 or 6 people.

Alice in the Territory have offered COT visitors 10% discount on bookings of 7 nights or more.

Alice in the Territory

Alice in the Territory is across the road from COT Rally Headquarters and the COT16 Service Park. 

Continue reading


Our top 8 reasons for moving the 2016 Classic Outback Trial to Alice Springs

We have often been asked why we decided to move the 2016 Classic Outback Trial to the Red Centre. There are a whole host of reasons, but we’ve pooled our thinking and here are our top eight reasons.

door sticker 8You won’t have to pack every morning – and you won’t lose your underwear!

Let’s face it, packing and moving every day is a drag. With all the other COTs it has been one-different-overnight-stop-after-another. That’s great for going places rarely visited, but a chore for you, your service crew, family and friends.

In 2016 we’ll unpack then stay in the same place for a week! You’ll wake up in familiar surroundings each day and have everything you need at the front door. But don’t think you won’t be travelling…. Continue reading