Every season, Brisbane speedway fans enjoy a privilege that makes them the envy of their counterparts in other parts of the country. It is the annual appearance of World of Outlaws champion Donny Schatz exclusively at Ausdeck Patio Archerfield Speedway that is generates enormous interest and his 2017/2018 will kick off on Boxing Night (December 26). Schatz will be joined in combat for the Boxing Night battle by fellow WoO star Logan Schuchart, the grandson of legendary outlaw racer Bobby Allen, who will be making his second visit to Australia.
Schatz arrives in Australia fresh from another stellar season at home that saw him capture his ninth World of Outlaws Championship, inarguably the World Championship of Sprintcar racing, along with his tenth victory in the Knoxville Nationals, the most prestigious race on the American dirt track calendar. In previous Archerfield campaigns, Schatz has accomplished some remarkable feats, such as winning every feature race contested and lapping the entire field in the Australian Open. Any competitor remotely serious about their Sprintcar racing will relish the opportunity to take on Schatz and Schuchart and it is no surprise that there are already more than 30 additional nominations for the Tuesday night showdown.
There is no tougher task in Sprintcar racing than defeating Donny Schatz in feature race competition and last season it was Luke Oldfield who climbed that mountain, downing Schatz, Schuchart and a stacked field of national and international stars to score a World Series victory, one of several feature wins he achieved in a season that ultimately saw him emerge victorious in the East Coast Logistics Track Championship. Although Oldfield again leads the track championship points this season and has been on the podium numerous times in Brisbane and elsewhere, he is yet to break through for a feature race win, so you can bet that he will be fixated on again usurping Schatz from the top of the podium.
Other locals who have been in strong form this season and will be out to upstage the American duo include Andrew Scheuerle, Mitchell Gee, Callum Walker, Peter Lack and Allan Woods, while West Australian young gun Kaiden Manders returns on the back of a sensational runner-up result in his state championship just two weekends ago at the Perth Motorplex. After a brief but remarkably successful stint in Midgets, Manders has proved an immediate success upon switching to Sprintcars and he will prove a considerable additional challenge for any locals hoping to find their way to victory lane.
In addition to the Sprintcar action, the Boxing Night spectacular will also feature Monster Trucks Fireworks and huge support program featuring round one of the Ian Boettcher Race Parts Formula 500 Stampede Series plus Compact Speedcars and Modlites.
Tickets can be purchased in advance from the track website – www.brisbanespeedway.com.au – with online ticketholders securing early entry to the grounds from 3.30pm and, with all children aged 12 years or under are admitted free when accompanied by an adult, it is really is the ideal family night out.
A third American in Lucas Wolfe will join Schatz and Schuchart for events on December 30, and January 1 before all three tackle World Series Sprintcars on January 6 and the $20 000-to-win Australian Open on January 8/9.
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