Short Course Returns to the Hill in May

After a decision made by the club to rest the Dryandra short course track this year, we’re pumped to be holding our short course event in Brookton again after an 11 year break.

For those new to the sport, we thought we’d share a bit of history about the Brookton track and how it came to be such an iconic event on the WA off-road racing calendar.

History of the Hill

In 1991 a young man named Fred Schoen was driving down the Brookton Highway on a hot summer day. Being a smart man, Fred knew he had to keep hydrated in the harsh Aussie weather, so he stopped at the pub for a pint. While enjoying his icy cold beer, he met a man named Peter Williams and they got talking. Peter, with his wife Judy, and their children Greg, Dale, Adrian and Dianne owned and lived on a property approx 10 kms out of town. Fred was a keen off-road racer and event organiser; Peter had some land – it was a match made in motorsport heaven! A few beers later, the King of the Hill was born.

Facts and bullshit

  • First ever race on the Hill – 1991
  • First King of the Hill – Eric Phillips
  • Last race – 2008
  • Originally held on the June long weekend as a long course, but has also been a short course and on Easter and Anzac day weekends.
  • Greg and Dale Williams, aka the Brookton Boys, once got lost during a race. Despite the fact that they had been living on the property since they were born, they also helped marked the track!
  • Kevin Hood and Barry Cochrane have both rolled it on the big spectator jump (and yes the jump is back in this year!).
  • Being so close to Perth, many a late night gearbox/engine rebuild, or dash for spare parts was done to keep cars in the race. This rarely ended well!
  • Neil Cosh and Keith Rance once completed two prefect barrel rolls over a fence and landed on the a different part of the track, facing the wrong way, with Dirk van Geest and Big Al closing in. Although given a high score for their acrobatic ability, the dangerous stunt lost them points.
  • Steven Phillips, Danni Joyce, Shelley, Emma and Jarrad Howe, Keith Rance, Dean Cosh and Jared Percival all started this track riding bikes and causing trouble as kids. Eventually they all graduated to the navigator seat, Steven, Danni and Jarrad Howe will return this year in the drivers seat.
  • Gary Howe once greeted the chequered flag while his car was on fire.
  • The race was once red flagged due to weather. It rained so much that everyone had to be towed out of the property by the Williams’ tractor.
  • Drivers to beat back in the day were: Steve Graydon, Eric Phillips, John Kwacki, John Webb, Rod Hatter, Max Pilmer, Alan Klompmaker, John Vellinga, Gary Friend, Alistair Colley Jnr, Kevin Hood.

Info for the Brookton virgins

  • There are two types of weather/track conditions – WET or DRY (there is no middle).
  • If you bought your tent pegs at Kmart don’t bother bringing them – they won’t go into the ground.
  • You will trip over a rock – there’s no way to avoid it!
  • There will be a licensed bar at the event serving tea and coffee all day Saturday and the harder stuff Saturday evening.
  • No catering so BYO food.
  • A communal camp fire will be up on top of the hill.

Check out the event page and follow us on Facebook for all the latest event updates and registration details.

Photos: Steve Triscari