Sun shines on big Rally Queensland

The third round of the Bosch Motorsport Australia Rally Championship takes place this weekend, with more than 60 crews taking part in the latest edition of the Accent Benchtops Rally Queensland.

Based out of Gympie, located near Queensland’s iconic sunshine coast, the event will feature a host of talented crews, including the return of some familiar faces.

Reigning champions and 2024 Championship leaders Harry Bates and Coral Taylor will again lead the field out of Pedders Rally Central on Saturday morning for the first of 14 stages across the Gympie and Imbil region.

This round will also see the return of Luke Anear, who will pilot the former Toyota GR Yaris AP4 of 2022 Championship winner Lewis Bates, with Lewis to steer a brand new Toyota Yaris Rally2 car, the same machinery his teammate Harry has been in for the first two rounds of the event.

Bodie Reading and co-driver Mark Young also return to the ARC for the first time since they were crowned 2023 MainFix Production Cup winners at the end of last year. The pair have committed to defending their crown in the remaining four rounds of the year, eager to push current Production Cup leaders Molly Taylor and co-driver Andy Sarandis.

Taylor said she was excited to be back in Queensland for a rally known for its challenging roads.

“Rally Queensland is an amazing place for rally. It’s a great location,” Taylor said.

“The roads there are really demanding, some really technical, quite rough.”

Tasmanian Eddie Maguire, who sits fifth on the Championship standings, said the warmer weather did pose a challenge for crews.

“It’s probably the hottest rally on the calendar in terms of managing the car and getting it through with that damage,” Maguire said.

This event is also one that draws a big number of spectators, with rally fans in the region turning out in force for the weekend’s events.

That includes the iconic Wheels on Mary Friday night street party which sees the rally begin in style. All crews and their cars line Mary Street for the night time spectacle, with fans using the opportunity to get signatures and photos with their favourite cars and stars.

White Wolf Racing’s Tom Clarke said the support from the spectators made this event special.

“The town up in Gympie and everything we do up here drew potentially the biggest crowds to the ARC and that’s something that, I think, the sport really needs,” Clarke said.

“Just being in the town there for the, for the Friday night (Wheels on Mary) and seeing the amount of people there is fantastic.”

A spectator guide is available on, with designated points available across the weekend.

Fans unable to attend the event can catch all the action via the ARC social media channels, as well as the daily wrap shows available each night free and on demand via 7plus. A highlights show will also be available post event on both 7plus and 7mate.

The Accent Benchtops Rally Queensland takes place this weekend, 28-30 June.

Photos: MTR Images and CH Images