The History of Southern Cross Rally

The Southern Cross Rally was one of the world’s toughest International car rallies. Last run in 1980, the ‘Southern Cross” as it was affectionately known was won by Ross Dunkerton and Jeff Beaumont in a Datsun Stanza. Ross and Jeff still compete today.

Modern rally

The modern Southern Cross event in the late 70’s was a real test of man and machine, with some stages over 200 kilometres long with gruelling all-night tests through the NSW mid North Coast forests.

Some of those iconic roads that tested those teams are still used by Australia’s round of the Worlds Rally Championship, Rally Australia each year.


Enjoy our gallery and archives for Australia’s best rally.  

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World championship event

The Southern Cross rally in its later years was a candidate event for inclusion in the fledgling World Championship and is still considered to be our most iconic rally and so many drivers, navigators, service crews, officials and spectators remember each event like it was yesterday.

Many people on the North coast of NSW still remember the event coming to their town in the middle of the night.

Bringing out the best in 1966

Harry Firth and Graham Hoinville won the first event, the Rothmans International Southern Cross in 1966 in a Ford Cortina GT and the Sothern Cross Rally would go on and test the world’s best rally teams.