DMACK world rally team Driver Ott Tanak on the Wedding Bells Shakedown track. 17 NOV 2016
DMACK world rally team Driver Ott Tanak on the Wedding Bells Shakedown track. 17 NOV 2016 Trevor Veale

A car-driven dust storm is whirling on the Coffs Coast

THE action has been fast, furious and simply spectacular at today's Kennards Hire Rally Australia WRC shakedown at Wedding Bells State Forest, west of Woolgoolga.

The dust has flown thick and fast with the world's best rally drivers achieving incredible air on one jump in particular during the vehicle testing stage.

Quizzed about the driving dust on the Aussie roads, World champion Sebastien Ogier is more fazed about having to start the opening rally stages on Friday as the first car though.

There he'll have to sweep the roads, leaving dust in his wake for the rest of the field. 

"There will be one stage where dust will be an issue we know that but all the other stages it will be more problematic to clean the surface so all in all I would still prefer to be in the dust to be honest," Ogier said.

His Volkswagen teammate Jari-Matti Latvala said he thought Sunday's stages - the Bucca and Wedding Bells stages - could ultimately decide the rally.

"We will have some dust but luckily the start on Friday we are starting on some open roads also on Saturday is quite open also it's not so bad but Sunday might be tough it might be difficult in the forest," Latvala said.

Volkswagen's Andreas Mikkelsen tears up the dust during today's Kennards Hire Rally Australia shakedown in the Wedding Bells State Forest, west of Woolgoolga.
Volkswagen's Andreas Mikkelsen tears up the dust during today's Kennards Hire Rally Australia shakedown in the Wedding Bells State Forest, west of Woolgoolga. Trevor Veale

The Advocate's chief photographer Trevor Veale was on hand at Wedding Bells this morning to capture the shakedown action.

All in a day's work the images have come at a minor cost with flying stones and pebbles accounting for a camera lens filter and a rear camera screen.

Trev, who has shot most of the Rally Australia stages for the past four years, says today's location was by far the best scene for rally photography in the event's history on the Coffs Coast.

The shakedown is the driver's first chance to get reacquainted with their long haul vehicles ahead of tomorrow's opening stages.

This afternoon the full rally field will turn out for the Kennards Hire Rally Australia show in the Coffs Harbour city centre from 4pm.



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