The perennial grudge match between motor vehicles and the Territory's harsh roads continues this weekend with the 43rd Finke Desert Race. But our love affair with dust and speed goes back long before Finke. In the 1950s a legendary set of car races known as the Redex Round Australia Reliability Trials took place, the most famous in 1953. More than 50,000 people saw the cars off in Sydney, which then headed up the coast to Townsville, inland via Mount Isa to Darwin, then down to Adelaide and back to Sydney. Pictured here is a Jaguar crew overnighting in Alice Springs. But it was a Peugeot 203 driven by Maitland pharmacist Ken Tubman that controversially won the 10,500 kilometre event by just 25 seconds and instantly became a household name.

Image: Sydney Morning Herald


Published: 10 June 2018

Forgotten Territory was a weekly photo column of historic images in the Northern Territory News which I curated from 2016 until 2019 supported by the collections of the Northern Territory Library and other cultural institutions around Australia, as well as local history Facebook groups. 

Click on the images to read the story behind the image.

Warning: May contain images of people who have died.

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These works were made on Arrernte, Larrakia, Gaddigal and Lenape land that was never ceded