Warren wins great mates tribute race at Mid-Western, Ansell wins Stoney Point 500
Mortlake Speedway Club closed out its season on Saturday at Mid-Western Speedway with the annual major events the Hanno Tribute for Street Stocks supported by ‘Roadies’ the Mortlake Roadhouse and the Stoney Point 500 for Wingless Sprints headlining, and wins went the way of two South West Victoria favourites, Brad Warren raised in the area with family still living in Dixie, and Chris Ansell from Hamilton.
Brad Warren won the Street Stock ‘Hanna Tribute’ race for his late great mate Brendan Hannabury a Mortlake man, and Ansell won the Stoney Point 500 for Wingless Sprints whilst Dane Court won Super Rods and Nathan Buckley from Horsham won the Limited Sportsman based on points.
Weather in recent weeks and proved a tough opponent for track officials and drivers alike and unfortunately on race day several track preparation periods were required to bring the track into condition for another round of racing. The Stewards and officials worked hard to do this to ensure the feature events could take place, with the support of competitors who chose to keep racing.
In Street Stock qualifying Queensland champion Matt Nelson won the first qualifying with Morris Ahearn a Mortlake member taking the second. Troy Hose and Brad Warren then won in round two before Nelson and again Warren won the third-round qualifiers.
A twelve-lap right hand down followed by twelve lap left hand down split feature race for the Street Stocks was emotionally charged for a handful of drivers competing in memory of their mate and Warren who had been close to winning previously got a great start on lap one taking the lead straight away with Shane Ardley following him into second spot ahead of Nelson.
When the first twelve laps finished Warren was ahead of Ardley, Nelson, Ahearn, Ricky Throckmorton, and Paul Domburg. Two laps onto the second leg, Nelson pulled infield with a broken car and Warren continued out front. Back in the pack Domburg and Throckmorton changed spots on several occasions. The chequered flag unfurled, and Warren, hollering and fist pumping was overwhelmed to win the ‘Hanno Tribute’ from Ardley, Ahearn, Domburg and Throckmorton.
After the race Warren paid tribute to his mates’ family and the Mortlake club for holding the event and shared an important reminder to all. “Well done to the Hannabury family and Morris Ahearn for the organisation of the event, thank you to Mortlake club for the support of the race and well done to the podium results to Shane, Morris, Paul and Ricky. Remember, we do not want to have more tribute races, there is always somebody you can speak to call me, call somebody, if you are struggling.” Warren shared.
Wingless Sprint drivers competed in the Stoney Point 500 event and with four qualifiers Chris Ansell won two of those and lined up at the front of the field for the feature race. Alex Thomson and Greg Bishop also won qualifiers.
Ansell led Thomson, Bishop, Steven Hateley and Jeremy Pearson on lap one of the final. Robert Whiteside was an early casualty off to the infield and Bishop and Thomson exchanged spots a couple of times. After a caution on lap two, eighteen laps straight were run with Ansell leading every lap and winning from Bishop who challenged closely for the last five laps. Thomson finished in third with Aron Lawrence and Pearson rounding out the top five.
Stanley Marco, Dane Court and Neville Gange won qualifiers in the Super Rods to head into their feature event where Court started in pole position. Court grabbed the lead on lap one from Marco, Jamie May, Jacob Pitcher and Gange. On lap two as Court coming out of turn four hooked a rut and left a gap for Marco to shoot through a huge crash resulted with Marco also hitting a bump crashing him into the wall just short of the stewards and bouncing in front of Gange resulting in damage to both cars.
By lap six Court led Pitcher, May, Billy Grist and Raedyn Marco and as the feature event laps ticked down that is how the top five remained with Court picking up a win following on from a recent second placed finished at the same venue.
The return of Limited Sportsman to the venue unfortunately was affected by the track conditions as they finished two of three qualifiers having the third and the final cut due to Stewards call on safety grounds. Nathan Buckley had won a heat race earlier as did Dillon Siely. On points Buckley, Siely, Troy Curran, Joshua Aston and Craig Ansell were the top five finishers.
The Mortlake Speedway Club would like to thank all the fans, drivers, and officials for their support on a tough day. The club is proud to have been able to get through to ensure the feature events were held for the Hanno and Stoney Point.
Mortlake Speedway Club would like to thank the following for their support.
Brooklyn Car Sales – Wendouree
Camperdown Truck & Ag
Gilberts Truck & Tractor Service – Camperdown
O’Leary Ag Contracting, Camperdown
PWS Fabrications – Geelong
The Tyre Factory – Warrnambool
West Vic Tyres – Mortlake
Olsson Timing Services
Camperdown Auto Pro
Barkley Waste Collections – Colac