Australian Safari-Western Australia-August 2009
For the third year running, the Australian Safari was held in Western Australia. For the third year running, a GHR Honda rider finished the grueling 3771km event in 1st place, outright on a Honda CRF450X.
2009 belonged to Jacob Smith. At only 20 years of age, Jacob became the youngest ever winner of the Australian Safari. His name will also be in the record books, along side his older brother Todd, for the highest placed siblings. The brothers from Condobolin, NSW, finished 1st and 2nd Outright, with last years winner, Ben Grabham finishing in third.
Grabbo had switched from Honda to KTM for 2009, but luck was not on his side in the Australian Safari. Grabbo suffered a rear wheel problem that put him from 1st, back to 24th early on in the race. He fought back, day by day to finish 3rd outright.
The Quad Division was taken out by Josef Machacek on his Yamaha Raptor 686. Paul Smith fought hard to finish in second place aboard his Can Am Renegade 800. Third place went to Martin Plechaty riding a Borile Bory FM700R.
The Auto Division was won by Riley/Doble for the second year running, in the short wheel base Mitsubishi Pajero. Second place went to the Nissan GQ Ute, driven by Conner/Conner. Dakar competitor Bruce Garland brought home his Isuzu DMAX in third outright, with some navigation help from Harry Suzuki.