The Sundstrum Rally  Information
Due to insufficient entries the 2015 event has been cancelled
Information on a future event will be posted as soon as it is available

for Photos of prior events
What its all about 2015  Download Here       Tour Rules Download Here        2015 Entry Form  Download Here
Back in the early days of motoring associations, going back as far as the early 1930s, AA Otago promoted a range of provincial car trials.

The original aim was “to encourage motoring generally, by tours, competitions, motor vehicle races, lectures, discussions, social functions, exhibitions, meetings and other suitable and proper means”.

Spawned from this background is Otago’s “Sundstrum”, a unique event which has been running virtually every year since 1949.  The rally takes its name from Mr C. W. Sundstrum, a well known Dunedin dentist and sportsman who died in 1946, leaving a sum of money to the “Otago Car Rally”.

The Sundstrum this year is a one day event. It has evolved to incorporate challenges for the trialist yet still appeal to the everyday driver and their family. The challenge for the tireless route plotters is to get competitors from a series of A’s to B’s following a series of written instructions guaranteed to get them safely to the finish, but equally guaranteed to ensure that there is the possibility that some will periodically deviate from the correct route without being remotely aware of  the fact.  

It is not as technically difficult as any Motorsport NZ trial that some of you may have competed in, but it is a little more challenging than your average school fundraising car rally.
The Sundstrum is a motorized clash of minds, like orienteering on wheels.  It involves simple navigation, some very basic timekeeping, and observation skills.  

And the driver, whilst being compelled by the rules of the event to drive safely, will also have his or her skills assessed during some light-hearted driving tests.
The highest number of competitors was in 1973 when 74 teams competed.  In recent years, entries have stabilized in the 15 to 25 range. 
This year we are hoping for 50+ competitors. Prize money is zilch, but prestigious cups are up for grabs, such as the ‘Otago Motor Club Lindis Cup’, originally won by a team from Cooke Howlison and Co Ltd, competing in the “Labour Day Trial” back in 1933!    

The next event will be held on Saturday 28 February 2015.

Anyone can enter, it is suitable for most vehicles and the focus is fun whilst being challenged.

Meantime you can register your interest in obtaining more information and registration forms by emailing Garth Tyrrell,  or mobile ph 021 517 007
Happy rallying!
Otago District Council
District Manager  Philippa Sinclair
Otago Councillors
  Jeffery Donaldson (Chairman) 
  Brian McComb (Vice Chair)
  Norman Oakley
  Malcolm Budd
  Alan Race
  Boyd Wilkinson 
  Garth Tyrell
  Robert Jones
  Hudson Biggs
 National Information & links
 AA New Zealand web site
New Zealand Transport Agency web site
 Otago Regional information
 John Wilson Ocean Drive
This iconic Dunedin road has for years been a place to relax with excellent sea views and a comfortable walk above St Clair/St Kilda beach. It was closed in 2006 while a new outfall pipe was constructed. However after the work was completed in 2009 it was decided by the Dunedin City Council, after various states of opening times and access limits, not to reopen it to vehicular access. Various reasons were given, ranging from prevention of anti-social behaviour by youths to prevention of suicides from Lawyers Head. However most of the reasons were only supported by anecdotal evidence and the 'hard' evidence that was produced did not stand up to close scrutiny when challenged.


The Otago AA District Council conducted an online survey of its AA Members asking for their feelings and wishes regarding John Wilson Ocean Drive. The results showed strong support for it being open to the public. Therefore the AA decided to adopt this matter as a project and are currently working to ensure this iconic road is made available for all to use and enjoy.


To date: Otago AA District Council submitted at the Dunedin City Council (DCC) hearings on this matter and used the data from the Member survey to support its views. The outcome was excellent.

DCC have decided that there will be vehicular and pedestrian access to this iconic road. The details are currently being worked through at DCC to provide a safe and enjoyable environment that all can enjoy.

Caversham Valley Bypass SH1
The AA Otago District Council has been active for several years advocating for and submitting on improvements to this arterial stretch of road that provides the exit south from the city.
Prime needs are: dual carriageway all the way from the Andersons Bay Road junction with SH1 to the Barnes Road junction; a safer way for pedestrians and vehicles to cross/access SH1 at Lookout Point; and a higher speed limit that aids traffic flow out of the city preventing congestion at busy times.
Work is in progress now and an acceptable level of improvements to traffic flow have been approved and financed.
Defensive Driving Iniative
The AA District Council is running an ongoing project assisting pupils from Otago High Schools to undertake the AA Defensive Driving Course.

The pupils, who all hold their restricted licence, have been identified as students who would benefit from the course. Funding comes from Otago Motor Club Trust grants.

The Otago AA District Council has introduced the initiative into 7 Otago High schools. The AA is interested in finding ways to improve road safety in New Zealand and young driver education is essential to producing lifelong safer drivers.

The AA Council hopes this initiative will give young drivers essential knowledge and skills to improve their ability to safely get through the statistically proven most dangerous stage in their driving lives.

Should any Otago region High School wish to apply for funding for a Defensive Driving Course in their school please contact the District Manager.