Zestino Tyre Rally Sprints – The Easy way to Rally

What are they?

Zestino Tyre Rally Sprints share many common elements with full rallies. Competing vehicles have a driver and may have a navigator, are a race against the clock and run on dirt roads. The major difference is that the events are simpler and cheaper making them easier to enter and compete.


The rally tracks we use are known as stages. There may be one or more different stages during an event. Each stage may be up to 10km long and may be used multiple times. The route and/or competition direction may be changed after each run. Generally there will be a minimum competitive distance of 25km for each round. The roads are graded and rolled after each event. Our rally sprints are all fully contained within private property.


A competing vehicle will line up at the start and wait for the allotted time. When the clock ticks over to the precise minute officials give the green light. The driver and navigator work as a team racing through the stage. At the end of the stage the vehicle passes through a flying finish and a time is recorded. The team with the lowest cumulative time for all stages wins the event.


The Zestino Tyre Rally Sprints are designed so that full rally cars are not required. Any car that is mechanically and structurally sound, has good brakes and no fluid leaks is eligible. Front seats and seat belts need to be fully operable and in good condition too. Vehicles must also have an in date fire extinguisher bolted in and a blue triangle on the body work showing the battery location. There is no need for vehicles to be road licensed.

Buggies and side by side (SxS) vehicles may also enter providing they comply with the safety. Wrist guards/window nets and approved eye protection is needed in open vehicles.  Home built buggies may require a pre-inspection to ensure sound construction. Side by side vehicles from manufacturers such as Yamaha, Canam and Polaris are permitted. These vehicles however must have harnesses fitted that comply with an approved standard.


Entry is open to drivers and navigators from as young as 15 years old. Junior drivers must satisfy us they can competently handle a vehicle before being allowed to enter. Up to two drivers can use the same vehicle and multiple co-drivers are permitted. This arrangement allows family members or friends to compete in the same vehicle.  Some drivers use the sprints to allow service crew or sponsors to have rides as well.


Both driver and navigator need a competition license. If competitors have a current AASA racing or a CAMS L2 Speed license (or higher) they are fine. If needed, competitors can apply for a day license before a rally sprint. The cost is $25 and the licenses can be applied for online.

Personal Safety Gear

Of course all competitors need a helmet. All helmets need to comply with the Australian standard (AS1698) or a higher race standard such as FIA. Some motorbike or Motocross helmets do not comply with the standards and may not be used. All competitors also need to wear long sleeves, long pants, socks and covered shoes.

2019 Zestino Tyre Rally Sprint Series

We’re delighted that Zestino and Better Value Tyres are on board for a second season. The format for 2019 will remain largely the same as 2018. The only difference is the addition of a Single Driver class. This will allow more competitors to enter even if they are not able to find a co-driver for the event.

2019 Calendar

First Round – 17th March (Daylight)

Second Round – 22nd June (Twilight)

Third Round – 27th July (Daylight)

Fourth Round – 6th October (Daylight)

Fifth Round – 2nd November (Twilight)

Here are the 2018 Zestino Tyre Rally Sprints series regulations. 

Click Here for More Info

2018 Series

During the year we had five rounds. There were classes for 4WD, 2WD, Rookies, Juniors and Buggy/SxS. Points were awarded at each round for the outright series and respective classes. After racing had finished we had a presentation and provisional results were announced.  Final results, updated points and a wrap up video posted online a few days later.

During the year we ran both daylight and night events. The season started in March and went through until late November.

Here's a video from Round 4. Click here for all Rally Sprint Results and here for Series Points.



We had previously run gravel rally sprints in 2010/2011. The problem was that the events were mostly suited to competitors who had; full rally cars, licenses and the gear. For a number of reasons we had low entry numbers so the events were shelved. Instead we focussed our motorsport efforts on Khanacross.

New beginnings

In late 2016 we had a discussion about our venue and the motorsport events we were running. Talking with competitors and having an intimate knowledge of rally, we identified a gap. We had a good think and came up with an idea – Rally Sprints. The question was “how?”  We’d been down this path before and it hadn’t worked out.

The land

When we got our land in 2010, the central area was largely inaccessible by vehicle. Sometime around the early 90’s large ditches (contour banks) were excavated throughout the farm. Whoever did the work was attempting to curb salinity and water logging brought on by extensive clearing. The kilometres of ditches were deep with high banks which mostly divided the farm. Any land survey was a long trek on foot. It was difficult to gain an idea of the conditions and terrain.

Technology saves the day

A fresh perspective not long before Christmas in 2016 brought new enthusiasm. The answer was a drone. Flights could be taken any time in any direction at any altitude giving crystal clear HD video and photos. We quickly realised that much of our unused land was suitable for a new rally sprint stage. Track design soon followed and we worked out we could start with a 5.5 km stage.

Earth, fire and water

In January 2017 road construction began. Unlike our previous rally sprint stage, the new track was tighter with more bends. The speeds needed to be kept down to fit in with our plan. Cutting and filling contour banks was carefully planned to ensure good drainage. Even the short crossings were difficult to fill. It must have taken a big machine a long time to dig the ditches! We also had to plan emergency access for safety as well.

Putting it all together.

By February the earth works were complete and the new format was finalised. We wanted to allow club level competitors to enter rally sprints. Basic licenses, no roll cages and simplified safety gear were crucial components as far as we were concerned.  It took a while to work through everything to meet our requirements. After many hours both at the keyboard and the controls of machines we achieved our goal. In March 2017 round 1 of the Gravel Action Sprint Series ran on schedule to a full field.


Series development

During the first year we continued development of the rally sprints. We extended the stage several times increasing the distance to 8.5km. Adding another dimension two of the rounds ran in the dark. We also added a further class for buggies and side by side vehicles to allow a wider audience to enter. The first series was won by David Thomas in an Autocross spec Ford Laser.

In 2018 we gained a naming rights sponsor and the Zestino Tyre Rally Sprints were born. Track extensions continued further taking the competitive distance to around 10 km. The extra roads also allowed us to change configurations. That way no two consecutive rounds would have the same route.The second season was a tight battle. 16 year old Kelly Thomas took top honours by just one point! She'd used a Ford Laser for four of the rounds only switching to a WRX at the last event.

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