After months of preparation, two Kempsey teams made the long drive to Alice Springs to compete in the 43rd Finke Desert Race.
David Spokes along with navigator Glen Hayes and Tim Baker with navigator Craig Anderson took on the challenges of the competition, which is contested over two days where each vehicle travels from Alice Springs to Finke and return racing over 452kms.
This year was the first year for Tim Baker in his Baker 2 Baja Chev 5570cc buggy, however he had the assistance of Craig Anderson who had twice previously completed the race as driver but had switched seats to navigate.
For David Spokes this was his third trip to the Finke, however his first as driver, having previously navigated for Craig Anderson. His navigator Glen Hayes was competing in his first Finke Desert Race.
Driving his Jimco 2000 Chev 5700cc buggy David Qualified 52nd out of 134 cars for the first leg of the race with Tim Baker qualifying 84th.
On Sunday competitors left Alice and made their way down the first 226kms to Finke with David Spokes/Glen Hayes arriving in 21st place with a time of 2 hours 23 minutes and Tim Baker/Craig Anderson arriving in 35th place with a time of two hours and 38 minutes. Both competitors being part of only 90 cars that made it down to Finke.
The return journey back to Alice Springs on Monday resulted in David Spokes / Glen Hayes finishing with a total time of 4 hours and 44 minutes to take 14th place outright. For Tim Baker / Craig Anderson they made it home with a total time of 5 hours and 8 minutes finishing 25th outright in the field that resulted in only 67 of the 134 cars starting finished.
After all those months of preparation they work surely paid off.