Mills, Booker, Roycroft, and Richardson win the headline events at Wangaratta
Trevor Mills from Corowa has won another ‘Bob Bailey Memorial’ for Production Sedans in honour of an old mate who passed away a few years ago whilst at the time holding the Corowa – Rutherglen Speedway Club presidency. The event was held for the first time at Wangaratta City Raceway, a track Bailey supported by competing at as much as he could. In addition, on Saturday night Ash Booker won the Grand Prix Midgets Wangaratta Cup, Felicity Roycroft from Kialla won the second round of the Sports Sedan ‘Darren Levy Memorial’ series and Justin Richardson won the state series round for Australian Motor Contest Association (Amca) Nationals.
Cars from around Victoria and New South Wales provided enough entrants for six qualifiers for the Production Sedan feature event. Mills began his night coming from back in the field to win the first of those. Leeton race driver Danny Harrison won the second, then Mills again and Wangaratta member Brendan Harper. Harper doubled up with another win in the final round before Mills became the only driver to win all three of his heat races.
Mills began the feature ahead of Harper, Craig McAlister, Harrison, Wayne Bourke and Kenneth Mankey the President at Wangaratta Speedway Club. Mills controlled the race at the front with Harrison moving to second by lap seven and Stephen Laidlaw moving into fifth by the same stage. At lap thirteen Mills was leading Harrison, Laidlaw, Bourke and Wayne O’Keefe. At the finish and after some attrition with more than half the field suffering break down or damage, Mills won from Bourke, Chris Fitzgerald, Tom Barnard of the Wangaratta club and David Parker also form the local club.
Competitors in the Sports Sedan ‘Darren Levy Memorial’ second round raced across three qualifying heat races with Rhys Collins winning one and Felicity Roycroft a committee member at Wangaratta winning two very close finishes to determine the starting positions for the final. Caleb Lincoln and Roycroft started at the front of the feature race field with Felicity taking the lead on lap one. By Lap nine, Lincoln assumed the lead before a few laps later Roycroft again led. The fifteen-lap final came to a close with Roycroft over four seconds in front of Rhys Collins, Darren Shortis, James Wood and Renah Pollard.
Amca Nationals drivers also competed through three heat race qualifiers with Steve Lodwick, Hugene Charvat, and Darren McCarthy the three race winners. McCarthy put himself out in front of the final early from Paul Sullivan and Justin Richardson, however on lap eight McCarthy pulled infield and out of the race. Sullivan became the new leader however Richardson became the third and final race leader on lap eleven and went on to greet the chequered flag in front of Sullivan, Kent Davey, Charvat and Jimmy Harris.
The Wangaratta Cup for Grand Prix Midgets attracted some cross the border interest with a handful of New South Wales competitors making it down to race. Chris Fowler the defending winner of the event started well by winning the first heat of the night with Ash Booker superb in the second in speed and in margin circulating some 1.3 seconds a lap quicker than his closest rival as he won. Gary Bowyer from NSW won the third and Booker again too good in the fourth. Booker won the fifth to be the only three-heat winner with Fowler winning the last qualifier, his second victory.
In the final, Terry Brown led the feature event early from Benalla racer Jack Ward, Janelle Saville, Adam Buckley and Booker. By lap four Booker from seventh starting spot assumed the race lead from Fowler, Brown, Saville and Ward. Saville passed Booker on lap nine to become the third race leader before Booker wrested the lead back on lap thirteen. The top three had a terrific tussle and with the chequered flag out on lap fifteen Booker won ahead of Fowler and Saville with .162 the distance between the three of them at the line with Gary Bowyer in fourth and Anthony Lea in fifth.
Trevor Evans banked yet another Evan’s Brothers feature win when he won the Standard Saloon final in front of Warrick Howie, Daryl Joosten, Scott Chippindall and Scott McAuliffe. Marty Bassett came up trumps in the Junior Sedans with a win ahead of Rhys Meakins, Hunter Carey, Toby Parks and Cooper Lack and Felicity Roycroft won her second final of the evening when she won the Ladies Open Sedans in front of Jaimi Barber, Sarah Meakins, Renah Pollard and Bianca Ballantyne.
Wangaratta City Raceway returns to action on February the 5th with Dirt Modifieds, Speedcars, Production Sedans and a Junior feature amongst the action.
Wangaratta Speedway Club wishes to acknowledge and thank their supporters including
A1 Tyre Service
Burson’s Auto Parts
Fallon’s Bus Services
North East Fasteners
Robinson Truck Repairs
Snap on Albury
Tailor Made Kitchens
Thomo’s Cash 4 Scrap
Ussher Plumbing and Contracting
Wangaratta Spring Works
Waw Credit Union
Wangaratta Brake and Clutch
Written by Speedcafe contributor DMT Sports Media – Dean Thompson