In true endurance event style, Leg Three of the Australasian Safari was a huge challenge for competitors.
At the end of Special Stage Six, a length of 245kms, Ben Grabham took the lead on his KTM530, finishing just over five minutes in front of Jacob Smith on a Honda CCC, and Rod Faggotter on a Yamaha WR450F.
“I’ve got a five minute lead after today,” Grabham explained. “I had a couple of minutes yesterday and I managed to extend it. I rode consistently and didn’t have any big problems with the bike.”
Yesterday’s moto leader Todd Smith on KTM, nursing a sore shoulder from a fall yesterday, has moved to fourth position, only 20 seconds after Faggotter and with Matt Fish on KTM only 30 seconds behind him. The top five riders are approximately one hour in front of the remaining field.
Paul Smith is powering ahead of the quad bikes, slightly increasing his lead to approximately 35 minutes on his Honda TRX700XX.
Today’s stage saw the competitors travelling through the Western Australian goldfields from Leonora to Coolgardie, resting up in the old goldfields town overnight before taking on Leg 4 travelling south to Norseman for another day of tough outback action.
Considered one of the world’s great endurance events, the Australasian Safari is travelling from Southern Cross in the wheatbelt through to the historic Western Australian goldfields, desert, rugged bush and coastal sand dunes, finishing at Esperance.