The Tatts Finke Desert Race is an off-road, multi-terrain battle for bikes, purpose-built buggies, trucks, quads and production-spec vehicles.
Competitors have two days to complete the gruelling 452km across Australia’s harshest desert country, driving from Alice Springs to the small Aputula (Finke) community in the desert. Tackling the journey at an average speed of 58 km/h is a feat that’s nowhere near as easy as it sounds.
This race is a pure test of man and machine. We’re talking half metre-high bumps and dips, every three metres, for 140 km. It’s relentless. Everything gets broken, from wheel arches to brake pads to human spirits.
If you compete, you need to prepare for the worst.
Getting Mazda BT-50 ready for race day wasn’t difficult
Changes were made to meet race and safety regulations, while keeping the ute as close as possible to its production specifications. These included:
2x Race seats
Heavy duty brake pads
Heavy Duty Shock Absorbers
While the BT-50 spends most of its time on the worksite, carrying loads and towing, our lack of modifications were a great way to push the limits of BT-50 and see how it would tackle this harsh desert race.
After all, plenty of hardcore buggies and trucks designed specifically to compete in events like this failed to even finish.