SATURDAY'S inaugural Bathurst Rally was dominated from the outset by 2017 Australian Rally Championship winner Nathan Quinn and local co-driver Ray Winwood-Smith in their Hyundai i20.
It was a flawless performance from the winning pair who did enough to see off challenges from runners-up Josh Redhead and Holly Kilbride plus third place finishers Richie Dalton and Dale Moscat.
A total of 46 cars lined up in the centre of Bathurst on Saturday in perfect weather for the Bathurst Rally, which was the third round of the 2023 NSW Rally Championship.
Quinn and Winwood-Smith were the fastest on all 11 stages on their path to victory.
Redhead and Kilbride, in their Mitsubishi Lancer GSR, were the second fastest on every stage.
The event had been run around Oberon for the last few years but was moved to Bathurst this year to take advantage of accommodation and commercial support.
The service area for the event was in Russell Street outside the courthouse, allowing spectators easy access to see the work being done on the cars between stages.
Spectators were also well served by viewing points at Carcoar (where the cars did a short run on a sealed road) and Macquarie Woods.
The rally used a mixture of shire and forest roads, giving competitors a good variety of conditions.
The roads around Carcoar, Blayney and Bathurst hadn't been used in a rally for some years, so they were new to many of the competitors.
Apart from dust the roads were in perfect condition, and this was reflected in the small number of retirements (seven), mostly caused by drivers becoming over enthusiastic while enjoying the high speeds that the roads allowed.
Apart from one incident the medical team had a quite day but even in that incident nobody was hurt, although the rally was delayed for a short time until the competitors involved could be given the all clear.
The rally was organised by North Shore Sporting Car Club, with Jon Thomson acting as clerk of the course.
The Bathurst Rally looks like being a permanent part of the NSW Rally Championship in future years and is a worthy successor to the Oberon rallies of the past few years.