Last Saturday night’s outing was one to remember for Jacob Jolley, whose consistent performance in the Wingless Sprint 50 Lapper rewarded him with the biggest feature-race victory of his career, which was made even more special by taking place on home soil at Lismore Speedway.
With his season so far consisting of a feature-race victory and multiple minor podium finishes, Jolley’s form has certainly been competitive. However, it was last Saturday night’s winning result that has now become the highlight of his Wingless Sprint campaign.
Lining up on the outside of the second row for the 50-lap feature race, Jolley wasted no time in making his move, almost immediately taking over second place, before going on to pip the race leader on lap 18. From there, the Lismore local could not be headed, proving his endurance and composure by controlling the pace out in front and greeting the chequered flag in a well-deserved first place.
“Winning the 50 Lapper is definitely our biggest accomplishment yet in the Wingless Sprints class and we’re over the moon to have been able to pull it off,” enthused Jolley, who placed sixth, second and fourth in his heat races earlier in the night.
“We had a few challenges in our heat races, but by the time the feature race rolled around, the car felt fantastic and we were able to hit our marks and get the job done.”
With his dad Jason being the 2001 National Modified Sedan Champion, who only recently retired from the sport, and his uncle Paul O’Neill having been a leading Super Sedan driver throughout the 1980s and ‘90s, Jolley’s family pedigree is solely in sedans, making his foray into the sport via the SSA Junior Sedans class a natural progression.
Spending just a single season in the class, Jolley then stepped away from driver duties, regaining interest when the opportunity to purchase a Wingless Sprint arose.
Following a brief debut towards the end of the 2016-17 season aboard his NX # 82 Lismore Nissan & Kia backed Maxim car, Jolley’s 2017-18 season campaign was certainly not without success, with the 22-year-old driver collecting four feature-race wins between Lismore and Grafton Speedways, along with placing seventh in the Northern Rivers Club point score.
Despite this success, Jolley’s season was also peppered with varied mechanical woes, one of which resulted in a disappointing DNF during the 100 Lapper at Lismore Speedway, where he had been running inside the top five.
Deciding to purchase another Maxim prior to this season in an effort to rectify these issues, Jolley and his team have spent significant time in the shed learning the car, with their hard work ultimately paying off.
“With dad and uncle Paul’s backgrounds being sedan based, stepping into open wheel competition has definitely been a big learning curve for us, but we’ve really enjoyed it so far,” added Jolley.
“The hours that we’ve spent going over the car are definitely starting to pay off, which is reflected in our consistency and results. Hopefully we can keep gaining more knowledge and insights into the car with each race meeting and pick up some more positive results.”
Other impressive results for Jolley this season include a hard-charging performance during this season’s 100 Lapper, where Jolley came from position 14 and managed to catch up with the leader with just two laps remaining, launching a move on the outside that he was not quite able to make stick, crossing the finish line in second place.
Currently leading the Driver to America Series at Lismore Speedway, Jolley’s plans for the remainder of the season will be to complete each of the series rounds, as well as competing in the Queensland Easter Trail, which will take place over three rounds at Brisbane’s Archerfield Speedway, Toowoomba’s Hi-Tec Oils Speedway and Lismore Speedway.
Throughout the 2018-19 season, Jolley is proudly supported by the following sponsors:
Lismore Nissan & Kia
North Coast Petroleum
Troy Rose Painting
Territory Road Marking
Caravan City Sales
Jake McRae Excavation
The Glenapp Boys
Special thanks go to Jolley’s dad Jason, his uncle Paul, and the rest of the family and friends.
To find out more about Jolley and his team, LIKE them on Facebook by searching Jacob Jolley Racing.