The recent Regional Reps meeting held at Heyfield on the weekend of the 18th and 19th May provided for some wonder- full scenic driving on the Saturday, fol- lowed by a very productive meeting on the Sunday. The Victorian Government’s Great Outdoors election commitment granted funding of $105m, from which $10.5m will be derived, commencing on the 1st July, in support of four wheel driving, and includes the revitalisation of iconic tracks. This will be augmented by a focused Market Research programme, addressing market segmentation, and include focus group feedback in support of the market research, to seek detail around vehicle mix, user expecta- tion and experience. This will be the first such market research undertaken in some time, and Four Wheel Drive Victoria is fully engaged in the process. Outcomes will provide not just for the Land Managers, but the Association as well, insight into what owners of four wheel drives are looking for and expect when they venture out into our country- side. With four wheel drives, of all ilks, sitting at the top of vehicle sales and ownership, the results will be a very powerful tool to address and under- stand the aspirations of all who use and venture into the magnificent environ- ment our State has to offer. As you can imagine the Land Managers have had a very busy and demanding summer with the level and numbers of fires we have experienced this year. In southern Alpine and Gippsland regions 164,000 acres were impacted by the fires. As a result there have been a number of early track closures due to damage and the risk of falling trees. Tracks are closed to allow for regenera- tion, repair and user safety. With the Queens Birthday long week-end in June the winter track closures are imminent, so time is running out for any last minute trips. However I do encourage all who are venturing out to ensure they are familiar with closures at all times, and always consider their safety and that of those accompanying them accordingly. Unfortunately we continue to see closed tracks being illegally used and damaged, including locked gates and other assets destroyed. Such anti-social behaviour is not just unacceptable, it costs the community a great deal of money. With an expanded compliance focus by the Land Managers, which FWDV fully supports, the “dob in a hoon” programme provides an avenue to support their efforts. Those present were provided a very informative outline of the work undertaken by the West Gippsland CMA, Catchment Management Authority, around protecting our catchment areas and the water quality in our reservoirs. Another reason we see fire effected tracks being temporarily closed. With the Regional Forest Agreement between the State and Federal Govern- ment under review, the Association has been invited to participate and be represented on the committee. This is currently a work in progress by our CEO, representing the Association, who is also representing the Association with the Grampians Management Plan. As part of our Four Wheel Drive Association Ministerial Advisory Committee membership, we have the opportunity to meet with the Minister, Lilly D’Ambrosio, on a regular basis. This is an opportunity for the Association to brief the Minister first hand on the activities of the Association, and update her on the Strategic Plan and KPI progress which we work on with the Land Managers. Such a meeting was held recently and it was a pleasure to be able to thank the Minister for her support of the Association and four wheel drivers. The RTO continues to make good progress and add additional courses to its training programme. Along with the work been done in bringing new courses on scope and managing the ongoing compliance requirements, much of the registration, documentation and administrative processes have now been automated. Please watch out for the next member update day. This is an important opportunity to be able to get all the latest information from the Association first hand, apart from networking with other Club members. Michael Martin, President From the President From the President FOUR WHEEL DRIVE VICTORIA The peak representative body for all Victorian four wheel drivers since 1975 Victoria Association of Four Wheel Drive Clubs Inc. PO Box 292 Mitcham Vic 3132 Phone 03 9874 7222 Fax 03 9874 7233 Email office@fwdvictoria.org.au Website www.fwdvictoria.org.au ABN 40 891 301 368 ASSN A0013539S RTO 21605 Print Post PP 100005076 BOARD OF MANAGEMENT EXECUTIVE President Michael Martin (Toyota Land Cruiser Club of Australia - Victoria Branch) Vice President Colin Oates (Off Peak 4WD Club) Secretary David Crainean (Pajero 4WD Club) Treasurer Garry Doyle (Eureka 4x4 Club) BOARD MEMBERS David Roberts (Toyota 4WD Club), Kat Marmara-Stewart (MJOC, Gippsland & Wandering Four Wheelers 4WD Clubs). STAFF Chief Executive Officer Wayne Hevey (Just Mates 4WD Club) Office Administrator Alison McLaughlin (Mansfield Alpine 4WD Club) Accounts Karl Norman Projects & Events Officer Ian Fletcher (Melbourne Jeep Owners Club) Training Officer Sheila Douglas TRACKWATCH Editor Brian Tanner (Toyota Land Cruiser Club of Victoria, Geelong FWDC) Email editor@fwdvictoria.org.au Individual Contributors Brian Tanner, Ian Fletcher, Greg Rose, E. Johnson, Sharyon McGregor, Richard Beilharz, Eric Bishop, Graeme Mitchell, Ness Vergara Production Brian Tanner 2018 Copy Deadline next issue 1st August for September 2019 issue 1st November for December 2019 issue 1st February for March 2020 issue 1st May for June 2020 issue Advertising ceo@fwdvictoria.org.au Design and Artwork by Brian Tanner Cover pix: Warrnambool 4WD Club touring in the Otways All material appearing in Trackwatch magazine is copyright. Reproduction in whole or in part is strictly forbidden without prior written consent. Freelance contributions and submissions are welcome by this magazine. No responsibility is accepted for unsolicited manuscripts, photographs, etc. The opinions expressed by contributors are not necessarily those of Four Wheel Drive Victoria. All statements made, although based on information believed to be reliable and accurate, cannot be guaranteed and no fault or liability can be accepted for error or omission. The publisher reserves the right to omit or alter any article or advertisement. Advertisers agree to indemnify the publisher for all damages or liabilities arising from the published material. TRACKWATCH JUNE 2019 1