Mobilgas 1956 Around Australia Trial

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Mobilgas 1956 Around Australia Trial

The winning team of E. & L. Perkins (driving a Volkswagen) received £3750 prizemoney and a new car, plus a £2000 bonus if they compete in the 1957 Monte Carlo Rally. Second place getter J. Masling, K. Miller & H. Cape (driving a Holden) received £1000 prizemoney, while Third place getter R. Foreman & G. Easton (driving a Volkswagen) received £500 prizemoney.

Class Winners:

  • Up to 1000cc - Major Warwick, Skoda (2235 points)
  • 1001cc to 1500cc - E. and L. Perkins, Volkswagen (48 points)
  • 1501 - 2500cc - J. Masling, Holden (62 points)
  • 2501cc and over - G. Horner, Customline (216 points)

State Awards:

  • New South Wales: J. Masling (Holden)
  • Queensland: A. Griffiths (Volkswagen)
  • Northern Territory: R. Leech (Holden)
  • Western Australia: D. Plunkett (Volkswagen)
  • South Australia: Australian Motors (Volkswagen)
  • Victoria: Perkins (Volkswagen)
  • Tasmania: J. Vaughan / B. Lancet (Volkswagen)
  • ACT: G. Cusack (Volkswagen)
  • New Zealand: Alma Braddock / G. McMillan (Volkswagen)
Please Note: You can sort this listing by simply clicking on the column heading
VEHICLE DRIVER(S)
1
Volkswagen E. Perkins / L. Perkins
48
2
Holden J. Masling / K. Miller / H. Cape
62
3
Volkswagen R. Foreman / G. Easton
80
4
Volkswagen A. Griffiths
101
5
Ford Customline G. Horner
216
6
Volkswagen J. Hall
225
7
Spacemaster Regal Motors
241
8
Ford Customline Mrs. M Blakeway / N. Bolton
243
9
Volkswagen J. Gamble
249
10
Volkswagen P. O'Sullivan
253
11
Volkswagen A.H Smith / A.M. Smith
305
12
Holden R. Leech
320
13
Holden Parkers Holden
348
14
Volkswagen G. Cusack
385
15
Volkswagen L. Mason
386
16
Volkswagen Alma Braddock / G. McMillan
846
17
Volkswagen J. Vaughan / B. Lancet
984
18
Briston 410 D. Calvert / A. Smith
1096
19
Simca N. Crowfoot
1219
20
Austin A70 D. Hose
1545
21
Austin A90 Austin Distributors Australia
1724
22
Holden L. Spies
1977
23
Skoda 440 Major Warwick
2235
24
DeSoto Fagan Pty Ltd
2388
25
Spacemaster J. Hay
2392
26
Volkswagen R. Lenaghan
2438
27
Humber Snipe Richardson & Kirwan Pty Ltd
2717
STARTERS AND FINISHERS
CAR
STARTED
FINISHED
Austin A70
1
1
Austin A90
2
1
Bristol 401
1
1
DeSoto
1
1
Ford Anglia
1
0
Ford Prefect
1
0
Ford V8
11
2
Goliath
2
0
Holden
13
4
Humber Snipe
1
1
Jaguar
1
0
Lloyd
2
0
Peugeot
8
1
Simca
5
1
Skoda
2
1
Vanguard
9
2
Volkswagen
22
11

The Volkswagen's Were All Conquering - Or Were They?



The "Starters And Finishers" list certainly weighs heavily in favour of the trusty Volkswagen's of the day, however it should be remembered that Volkswagen in Germany sent trained service technicians to maintain a mobile workshop which serviced all Volkswagens entered into the event throughout the route. This was arguably the very first time Australia had seen an International standard works service and support team.

Also during this event, the lack of supervision and adequate scrutineering allowed many competitors to virtually rebuild their damaged cars at will. Vacuum (Mobilgas) depended greatly on CAMS to provide adequate supervision and organisation, but instead CAMS were busy prosecuting those that had taken part in the Ampol event.

More so than the Redex trials that had preceeded the Mobilgas event, the days of a privateer being successful seemed numbered. This led Tom Farrell to write in Modern Motor Magazine: "The moral... is that trials are big business now.

Win a major trial and you'll sell more cars, while your competitors sales dwindle correspondingly. And to win, it is no longer enough to have a good car and crew; you must also be able to provide spare parts and trained mechanics along the way. The private entrant? He's had his chips - unless he does well enough in the early stages to be offered the repair facilities of his make's official team."

The most difficult stretch on the Mobilgas route was the 73 miles (117 km) from Kajabbi to Mount Isa. The organisers were concerned they had made the event a litte to demanding on the participating motor cars, and so cancelled the tough elimination sections toward the end of the route in South Australia and New South Wales. But such changes, seemingly made by the seat of the pants, did not engender harmony amoung the competitors.

Many became dissatisfied with the events organisation, or lack of. Imagine having "nursed" your car throughout the trial, even losing points at times so that your vehicle received less punishment, thus allowing you to put the pedal to the metal over the last few "deciding "stages, only to have these cancelled. The money and manufacturers may have been with the Mobilgas trial, but many believed the earlier "unsanctioned" Ampol event the better of the two.

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