Schatz back in Brisbane for ECL showdown
He is the best in the business, he loves turning laps on Ausdeck Archerfield Speedway and he loves to win, so the locals should expect no mercy when World of Outlaws superstar Donny Schatz joins the field for round seven of the East Coast Logistics Sprintcar Track Championship on Thursday night (December 26). As part of a huge Boxing Night extravaganza of motorsport entertainment, Schatz will take on current national champ Andrew Scheuerle and a field of more than 25 local and interstate Sprintcar stars. Also on the program is round four of the American Tire and Racing Services Midget Series, plus Monster Trucks, Fireworks, Modlites and Formula 500 Juniors.
He may have finished second in the World of Outlaws Championship this year in America (by a mere four points after 70+ nights of racing), but Schatz remains the benchmark performer in world Sprintcar competition and anybody who can upstage the North Dakota native in the 30-lap feature event will have accomplished something that very few others have been able to achieve. Of course, the likes of Scheuerle and Luke Oldfield should be confident of their chances given their form at home and interstate so far this season, which includes feature race wins for them both, and there are several others whose performances so far this season should see them confident of causing a Boxing Night boilover. Kevin Titman won the opening round of the track championship and has consolidated upon that result to remain atop the series standings, while former Queensland champ Mitchell Gee is enjoying a terrific season for car owner Simon Hansen, having secured two feature race wins thus far. Other standouts in the early rounds of racing have included Callum Walker, Brent Kratzmann, Ryan McNamara and former track champion Bryan Mann.
Meanwhile, former Australian Dirt Modified champion Jai Stephenson will make his Archerfield Sprintcar debut, joining current and four-time national Dirt Modified titleholder Kevin Britten in the field, while another NSW-based competitor in Darren Saillard is surprise addition to the field, no doubt lured north by the opportunity to take on the best in the business.
The Midget field might be a little down in numbers compared to what we have seen so far this season, but the series standouts from the opening three rounds are amongst the entries and that sets the scene for some magic action. Fresh from a podium finish in the Sprintcar feature at the previous race meeting, Brock Dean has opted to focus on his Midget objectives for this event aboard the DTR Mechanical King/Hawk #99 that carried him to victory in the round three. The other round winners so far this season in Glenn Wright and Rusty Whittaker will obviously be contenders again, as will Darren Vine who, somewhat inexplicably given his record of success, is yet to score a feature win this season. Chris Singleton, Cal Whatmore, Mitchell Rooke and Bodie Smith have certainly produced plenty of pace at times, Victorian Ashley Booker brings a wildcard element to proceedings and the return of Reid Mackay will no doubt be well received by fans and fellow competitors alike.
A bumper field has been secured for the opening night of the Menz Trade and Hire Modlite Mayhem, with Terry Leerentveld coming into the event fresh from a feature race win in Kingaroy. Whilst Leerentveld and Klinton Hancey have been the dominant drivers for several seasons, such is the depth in the category now that there are half a dozen other drivers (or more) who can be considered genuine contenders on any given night. Look for Sam Gollschewsky, Nathan Politch, Scott Lehfeldt, Dan Lewis, and Neil Gregson to feature in the fight for the right to stand atop the podium, although they will also have to overcome current national champ Kyle Honour if they are to do so.
The future stars of the Formula 500 Juniors round out the huge racing program and if the action they delivered at their last outing is any indication, things could get very interesting indeed.
Gates open from 4.00pm (3.30pm for online ticketholders) and early racing will hit the track from 4.45pm. Sprintcar time trial qualifying is scheduled for 5.00pm and the main program, featuring 10-time World of Outlaws champion Donny Schatz, Monster Trucks and Fireworks, will get underway from 6.00pm.
East Coast Logistics Sprintcar Track Championship round seven nominations: Andrew Baumber, Andrew Corbet, Andrew Scheuerle, Anthony Vanderreyden, Brent Kratzmann, Brett Minett, Bryan Mann, Callum Walker, Cody Maroske, Dan Murray, Darren Saillard, David Whell, Donny Schatz, Jai Stephenson, Karl Hoffmans, Kevin Britten, Kevin Titman, Kristy Bonsey, Libby Ellis, Luke Dougherty, Luke Oldfield, Mark Pholi, Mick Sauer, Mitch Gowland, Mitchell Gee, Ryan McNamara, Sean Rose, Tim Farrell
American Tire and Racing Services Midget Series round four nominations: Ashley Booker, Audie Malt, Barry Gibbs, Bodie Smith, Brad Dawson, Brock Dean, Cal Whatmore, Chris Singleton, Darren Vine, Glen Wright, Graham Flynn, Matt O’Neill, Mitchell Rooke, Nathan Mathers, Reid Mackay, Rusty Whittaker, Tom Clauss
Menz Trade and Hire Modlite Mayhem round one nominations: Abi Meehan, Anthony Stewart, Brayden Preston, Chris Fing, Chris Were, Dan Lewis, Dylan Hunter, Dylan Menz, Jac Carnall, Joel Smith, Josh Smith, Klinton Hancey, Kyle Honour, Max Collins, Nathan Politch, Neil Gregson, Rachael Jenkins, Sam Gollschewsky, Scott Lehfeldt, Sean Butcher, Sean Rose, Steve Collins, Terry Leerentveld, Tim Jackson, Warren Hooper
Formula 500 Junior nominations: Jared Boys, Jy Corbet, Kacy Lee Black, Kinser Claridge, Kyle Price, Ryan Newton, Taylor Prosser
For more information and event updates, follow Archerfield Speedway on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.
Ausdeck Archerfield Speedway is proudly supported by:
East Coast Logistics
Queensland Speedway Spares