Despite the bolstered field of front-running contenders, it was V8 Dirt Modified newcomer Klinton Hancey who continued to prove his prowess in last Saturday night’s Queensland Title at Maryborough Speedway, which doubled as the second 5 Star Dirt Series round, coming away with a convincing win.
Proving that he wasn’t intimidated by his more experienced counterparts, which included the likes of three-time Australian Champion Mark Robinson and numerous other former titleholders, Hancey’s solid form throughout qualifying was enough to earn him the inside front-row start for the Queensland Title-deciding feature race.
Making the most of his start to immediately power into the lead, Hancey, from Kawana Waters on the Sunshine Coast of Queensland, couldn’t be headed throughout the 30-lap duration, leading from start to finish to secure a well-deserved victory.
Despite starting alongside Hancey on the front row, it wasn’t the best of starts for Jai Stephenson (NSW), who slipped all the way back to fifth at the drop of the green flag but was able to make amends, making his way back up to second place by lap nine, where he remained throughout the rest of the distance to cross the finish line in the runner-up spot.
It was a strong performance from Chris Corbett (NSW) to clinch the final podium place for the fourth seasons in a row after starting from position six and falling backwards to ninth off the start, while 2001 Australian Champion Scott Cannon (NSW) was ultimately able to retain his fourth-place starting position, after battling for position five for most of the race.
Also retaining his starting position, an impressive Lee Gorton (NSW) rounded out the top-five finishers, while David Clark, a former Australian Champion, put in a stout drive to make his way forward to sixth place from position 15. Inside second-row starter Joshua Rose (NSW) was disappointed to slip back to seventh, with Andrew Firth (NSW), Sam Bruggy (Qld) and Trent Schofield (NSW) completing the top 10.
Final feature-race finishers included Andrew Pezzutti (NSW), Zac McDonald (NSW), Harly Wright (NSW), Phil McNamara (NSW) and Geff Rose (NSW).
The first of the feature-race casualties, Dale Corbett (NSW) retired to the infield on lap eight, where he was later joined by Mitchell Randall (NSW), Scott Quirk (NSW), Robinson (NSW) and local Phillip Roberts (Qld).
Getting the night underway with three rounds of 10-lap heat races, Randall, Joshua Rose, Scofield, Cannon, Stephenson, Dale Corbett, Hancey, Robinson and Gorton were the winners, while the B main saw Clark, Geff Rose, McDonald and Roberts earn feature-race transfer spots.
For the Queensland Title, the best performing of the Sportsman category drivers was Trevor Wiley (Qld).
The third round of the 5 Star Dirt Series is set to take place with the running of the Victorian Title on the Saturday night of March 16 at Moama’s Heartland Raceway (Vic).
Current 5 Star Dirt Series Point Standings after Round 2:
1. David Clark (Qld) – 348 points (WC)
2. Chris Corbett (NSW) – 285 (WC)
3. Jai Stephenson (NSW) – 244
4. Joshua Rose (NSW) – 240 (WC)
5. Andrew Pezzutti (NSW) – 239 (WC)
6. Mitchell Randall (NSW) – 236 (WC)
7. Travis Kennedy (WA) – 200 (WC)
8. Andrew Firth (NSW) – 196 (WC)
9. Scott Cannon (NSW) – 168
10. Sam Bruggy (NSW) – 156
WC = wild card used
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