Australian grandfather records 12th class win in Australia’s toughest offroad race
2nd Jul, 2015
Geoff Pickering, a grandfather of seven, left much younger drivers covered in red dust when he notched up his 12th production 4WD class win in a Mitsubishi Pajero in Australia’s toughest offroad race, the Finke Desert Race.
Pickering had nothing but praise for his Pajero race car, navigator Dylan Watson and team manager Bernard Grant following his recent class win.
“The Finke Desert Race is a truly incredible event down a narrow, rough track which was once the old Ghan railway line,” he said.
“It’s an amazing challenge of determination and perseverance to cross the ancient Finke River near the finish line and each time I compete it’s exciting and terrifying all at the same time.”
The Finke Desert Race is a renowned offroad event which covers 230 kilometres of desolate desert track stretching from Alice Springs to the remote Aboriginal community of Aputula on the northern edge of the Simpson Desert.
The event is a challenge for the 600 competitors who entered the Finke Desert Race in 2015, where just reaching the finish line is an achievement. Yet for automotive dealer Geoff Pickering, it’s an experience that has lured him to Alice Springs every June for 12 years.
Pickering has finished all 12 of his 12 Finke starts and, with his Mitsubishi Pajero, has stood on the top step of the podium in the production 4WD category each time.
“My Mitsubishi Pajero uses only the most basic performance upgrades including suspension designed to handle the rough conditions and CAMS certified safety equipment like roll cage, race seats and harnesses.
Geoff Pickering plans to attempt his 13th Finke Desert Race in 2016.