The Repco Reliability Retrial celebrates the 40 year anniversary of the original event, which was held in 1979

This year’s Repco Reliability Retrial saw 46 pre-1979 cars, including three original vehicles from the 1979 rally, set off on a journey around the country spanning 28 days and more than 15,000km.
Departing from Melbourne on a round trip with check points across the country in Perth, Darwin, Cairns and finally back in Melbourne, the vehicles were pushed to their limits on both tarmac and off road stages which closely emulated the route that was travelled by the original convoy in ’79.
Despite the harsh nature of the event and intense travel of more than 500km per day on average, 45 of the 46 teams managed to make their away around the country and back to the finish line in Melbourne, with a single car being lost on the Nullarbor beyond roadside repair.
Off road courses, while optional, added an additional strain on the classic vehicles often multiple times per day with countless late nights spent fixing vehicle issues, with some teams even as going as far to replace engines in a number of vehicles that suffered faults too severe to repair.

In support of the journey the competitors and support crew were undertaking, Repco stores nationwide pitched in to assist the team, holding early morning kick-off events in which doors were opened early for competitors to gather supplies for the day ahead, as well as supporting local community groups and charities with the profits gathered from the barbeque breakfast that was provided. Additionally, the team held a Show ‘N’ Shine at Repco Winnellie (NT) where members of the public were encouraged to come and meet the competitors and check out the unique cars.

The eventual winner of the event was the #17 VB Commodore piloted by the team of Barry Ferguson from New South Wales. Barry not only took out the honours of the 2019 Repco Reliability Retrial, but also finished second in the original event in 1979.
Surrounded by crew and family, Barry addressed the field of competitors and friends explaining the challenges of the rally in 1979 and the new challenges he faced in 2019, while thanking his crew, supporters and the Repco store network for the role they played in the Repco Reliability Retrial.

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