Race Wheels Australia help out “mates” at Kincrome Racing

Race Wheels Australia’s (left to right) Annette Taylor, Michael Taylor, Clayton Taylor, Ryan Taylor and Hayley Taylor ready to tackle Finke.

Race Wheels Australia, owned by the Taylor family in Brisbane, has shown tremendous spirit in the lead-up to next week’s Tatts Finke Desert Race in the Northern Territory.

The Taylors have offered up some valuable signage space on their pro buggy, chase truck and trailer to Kincrome Racing which has been left stranded and out of the event because of the on-going COVID-19 outbreak in Victoria.

The Kincrome team, headed by the father and son duo of Simon and Jackson Evans, was hoping their base in Bass in regional Victoria might have given them a slim chance to compete, but a decision by the Northern Territory Government to declare the whole of Victoria a hotspot ruled them out.

Anyone entering the NT must enter a 14-day mandatory quarantine at their own expense – meaning that anyone based in Victoria leaving for the NT on the day of the hotspot decision (June 2) would not come out of quarantine until after the final day of the race on June 14.

“We can confirm the race has not been cancelled. We will be going ahead, unfortunately without our Finke Family from Victoria,” said a statement on the Finke Facebook page.

Kincrome entered its first sponsorship deal in off-road racing this year with Evans Motorsport and was looking forward to having two fully-branded Polaris UTVs in Australia’s premier off-road event this week.

The Evans’ two-cars were part of an eight-car Victorian contingent in the 63-car SXS field for the desert race.

In total there are 169 four-wheel entries and 638 two-wheel entries, across 20 classes for the annual desert classic which returns after being cancelled last year due to COVID.

The Taylor family pro buggy will be driven by Ryan Taylor, while his brother, Michael, is the team manager.

Race Wheels Australia is the exclusive importer of Method Race Wheels in Australia and that brand will have a major presence at the event, as well as their own entry.

Method Race Wheels are the sponsors of the Finke Desert Race Prologue on Saturday which offers $5000 for the outright fastest vehicle, $2500 for the leading UTV and a set of wheels for the fastest bike and quad.

The withdrawal from the Finke event was a major hit for Kincrome Racing after showing great speed in recent rounds of the Kincrome SXS Motorsport Australia Championship.

Simon actually sits second in the Kincrome SXS Championship by just two points from Stephen Henry while Jackson rests in equal fourth.

The third member of the Kincrome Racing squad, rookie Eden Evans, is sixth outright, but was not scheduled to compete at Finke.

Kincrome Racing is now looking to compete in the next round of the Australian Off-Road Championship at Loveday in South Australia on July 23-25 before round four of the Kincrome SXS series at St Helens in Tasmania on August 7.

WHAT THEY HAD TO SAY…

MICHAEL TAYLOR – RACE WHEELS AUSTRALIA

“We have a great relationship with Simon and Jackson as customers, but also as mates,” said Taylor.

“They have put a great deal together this year with Kincrome and it is important to do what we can for new sponsors in the sport.

“I guess that’s a bit of what the off-road community is all about.

“Method Race Wheels provided us with a design for our pro buggy, chase truck and trailer and there was a bit of space remaining so we were happy to offer it up to Kincrome and help the boys (Simon and Jackson) fulfill their commitments.

“We are happy to fly the Kincrome flag at Finke and hopefully next year we can have the Evans boys back in the NT at full noise.”

SIMON EVANS – DRIVER/TEAM OWNER

“To say that we are disappointed to be missing Finke for the second year in a row would be a massive understatement,” said Simon.

“We had our fingers crossed that we might be a chance, but the extension of the lockdown and the NT declaring all of Victoria a hotspot has cruelled us.

“We have been making good progress with our speed and had really focused a lot of energy on Finke because it is the biggest event of the year.

“We have to thank Michael at Race Wheels Australia for their offer of carrying some Kincrome branding on their car for the event.

“Their offer really is an indication of the comradery that exists in the off-road community.”

JACKSON EVANS – DRIVER

“Shattered, that’s the only way to describe it,” said Jackson of the Finke no-show.

“Finke means so much to so many people and to be sidelined for the second consecutive year because of COVID is tough.

“We were looking forward to taking Kincome to the event for the first time as a major sponsor, but they have been understanding of our predicament.

“Michael and the guys at Race Wheels Australia have been very generous with their offer of carrying some Kincrome branding on their pro buggy and we cannot thank them enough.

“It will be enormously frustrating knowing everyone is blasting their way through the NT desert at one of the world’s coolest events and we are stuck back home due to no fault of our own.”