Deceased AORC competitors identified


Gerry Hoekstra. Picture: Canadian Bear Racing

The two competitors who died in a crash at the Rainbow Desert Enduro round of the Australian Off Road Championship have been identified.

Gerry Hoekstra and Ede Taric were both killed during competition on Sunday, with the event abandoned following the incident.

The pair shared multiple motoring passions, with Canadian-born Hoekstra competing in offroad racing, as well as speedway, while Taric enjoyed buggy driving and motorbike riding.

An outpouring of emotion has followed the incident, as the motorsport community, family members, and friends mourn the loss of the Melbourne men.

In a statement, event hosts Victorian Off Road Racing Association acknowledged the tragic incident.

“The Victorian Off Road Racing Association express our deepest condolences and our thoughts are with Gerry and Ede’s family and friends,” the statement read.

“We appreciate everyone’s support at this difficult time.

“The VORRA organising committee are working with authorities and cooperating fully to provide the information required to conduct the investigation into the incident.”

The Victorian Sprintcar Association paid tribute to Hoekstra in a statement.

“The VSA committee on behalf of its members are saddened to hear that former fellow competitor the bear Gerry Hoekstra has passed on,” the statement read.

“The big bear who loved a Canadian Club left Deb and his family way too young, doing what he loved, racing.”

Taric’s family are remembering him as a man who brought people together.

“Ede poured love on everyone he met,” the statement read.

“You will be painfully missed, the go-to guy bringing everyone together to live life to the fullest, and seizing every opportunity to go fast.

“Til we ride again Ede, run a muck up there, we love you.”

Victoria Police is investigating the cause of the crash, with the assistance of Motorsport Australia, and the Victorian Off Road Racing Association. extends its condolences to the friends and family of those involved.

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