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2022 ARB Australian Off Road Racing Championship
Rainbow - April 1-3     |     Hillston - July 8-10     |     Goondiwindi - Aug 12-14     |     Millicent - Sept 23-25

2022 BFGoodrich Motorsport Australia Off Road Championship
St George - March 18-20   |    Pooncarie - May 6-8   |    Finke - June 10-13    |    Loveday - July 30-31   |    Rainbow - September 2-4   |    Kalgoorlie - October 21-23

Barnett Resumes AORC Campaign at Pooncarie
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Tuesday, 03 May 2022
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Source: Toby Cooper, TC Media
Photographers: Brett Lehmann, Lehmann Motorsport Photography & Corey Aldridge, Show N Go Photography


After a more then adventurous start to their 2022 season, Craig Barnett and his Cougar Racing crew are currently in final preparations ahead of their trip south to the New South Wales township of Pooncarie this weekend for Round 2 of the BFGoodrich Motorsport Australia Off Road Racing Championship.

One of only a few crews in this weekend’s field who competed at the ARB Pooncarie Desert Dash last season, Barnett is well aware of the unrelenting outback terrain, and is undeterred by its challenging reputation.

A breakthrough fifth outright, and third in class in the teams Southern Cross Mark 6 at the recent ARB Big Desert 480 at Rainbow has left Barnett excited and optimistic about his chances this weekend. After making a hairy creek crossing to avoid being stuck in flood waters in the days prior to Rainbow, along with three blown trailer tyres in transit, Barnett and crew finally reached their destination, which was a win in itself.

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From a solid 15th outright position in the prologue, to ninth overnight, Craig and Doug flicked the switch on a demanding Rainbow layout to cruise home in fifith, capping off a memorable weekend for all at Cougar Racing.

Prior to his Rainbow success, Barnett kickstarted his AORC charge at St George in mid March, and it too turned out to be quite the adventure. During Saturday’s first section, in heavy dust, Barnett clipped a tree which wiped the entire passenger side off the car, immediately ending his Queensland aspirations.

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However, in true off-road spirit, his small crew of hero’s worked through the night to rebuild for Sunday’s action using scrap steel found in an abandoned shed in town. Barnett refused to give in, as he completed his 3 laps whilst stuck in third gear, to bank some valuable AORC Class Championship points.

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After the Pooncarie campaign, Barnett is scheduled to tackle the AORC Tatts Finke Desert Race over the June Long weekend in Alice Springs, before launching into the ARB The Gap 440 at Hillston and the AORC Can-Am Loveday 400, both held in July.

Barnett would once again like to thank his tireless Cougar Racing crew who continue to go above and beyond. The team worked day and night over the long weekend even in Barnett’s absence to ensure the Southern Cross is in prime condition for Pooncarie. Also, a massive shout out to Glen Towers for his extraordinary front end rebuild between races after St George, to Pats Tyre Service in Wagga Wagga for the new set of trailer tyres and to the teams major sponsors Cougar Mining Group, CH4 Drilling and Australian Mining Equipment for their ongoing support and commitment towards a successful 2022 season.