And the fun begins!
A very full day today and we haven’t even started rallying yet!
First up this morning we headed up the famous Mount Panorama where registration and scrutineering were conducted at the Bathurst Light Car Club on Conrod Straight. All our safety gear was checked and found to be in order, so we are all clear to rally. After registration, we ducked back into town for some brekkie and then back to Conrod Straight for some media shots with WIN News. Then off to Repco to get a spare bulb for our amber flashing light (just in case) and a trolley jack (we knew we had forgotten something!). Back to the mountain for our group photo shoot behind Pit Lane and then back to the club for the official briefing. This is where we receive our road books – everything we need to know for the next 8 days is in the road book, so you must carry it EVERYWHERE!
A brief respite back at our hotel to do the final packing up and tying down of everything in the Kar before we headed off to the official opening dinner at the RSL Club. The Chairman of Kidney Health Australia, himself a kidney transplant recipient, welcomed us all and was delighted to be attending his first Kidney Kar Rally.
Then came the announcement of the top 15 fundraisers for this year. The top 15 get to be the first 15 cars that take off each day, regardless of how well they are progressing in the rally. The remainder of the participants are drawn randomly, so you could be 16th or 60th and that changes each day. We were very pleased to discover that we were the 4th highest fundraiser this year and will be travelling with our friends from Wagga in front of us and our friends from Tumut behind us. It seems we three usually end up close together in the field, but we were delighted to jump a couple of places up the ladder from last year! So a big THANK YOU to all our sponsors and supporters – from us and from the Kidney Kids.
We also heard from Chelsea, a kidney kid and transplant recipient, who at 17, managed to stand up in front of this large crowd and tell us what the rally and the Kidney Kids Camps mean to her and all the others that attend. It is always great to hear these kids stories – it just serves as a reminder of why we are all here doing this rally.
Then came the infamous auction. Barto is an amazing auctioneer, a little bit cheeky, but really knows how to get the most out of the crowd. We managed to get a whopping $795 for our two auction items (normally valued at $425), so that’s a great kick start to next years fundraising! A special thanks to Sarah Braybrook for donating her fantastic artwork to help raise money for us.
And now to bed ready for a 6am start tomorrow in what looks to be a pretty gruelling first rally day!