Geelong based racer Chris Halesworth has stepped into AMCA racing this season moving out of Wingless Sprints where he had his previous speedway racing experience up until the end of the 2013/14 season & after a season away from the track Halesworth can’t wait to get stuck into things against his new competition & friends.
The original plan was to step into Sprintcar racing for 2014/15 & some practice sessions were held in Michael Tancredi & Kane Hough’s 410ci Sprints with Halesworth turning some consistent laps, becoming hooked on a future in Sprintcars.
Without the funding required to step up into Sprintcars with an engine purchase or lease, Chris Halesworth Motorsport faced reality to decide to sit out for a season and put some finance together and work out if Chris was looking for a short time in Sprintcars or a long time in another competitive division.
A season away from Speedway was Halesworth’s first year away from motor racing since the age of 7 where he raced fifteen years non stop since the age having started in GO Karts before stepping onto dirt.
Putting some funds together with work at Geelong Signs & his own business One Vision Creations was Halesworths main focus over the last twelve months as was getting to racing and supporting customers & friends whenever he could.
When funding was right the decision was made to purchase an AMCA and aim to race for many seasons instead of one in a Sprintcar.
There was an opportunity to race John & Chris Fowlers spare Grand Prix Midget, which Chris was excited about having watched Midgets at Avalon Raceway from the time he was a young fan, unfortunately with the car needing to be put back together and work commitments getting in the way & work on his own AMCA being a priority, this didn’t happen.
Halesworth made mention of this opportunity. “I can't thank Chris & John enough for keeping me in mind when I had nothing to race, I would have loved the chance & can see Garry Jacobson from V8 Supercars enjoying his time in the division, the racing has stepped up a notch for them for sure.”
Choosing AMCA came about after watching friends at Avalon & Redline Raceways in the division, the racing was fast, close & the majority of cars looked great & even in competition. Phil Collins the Father of Jamie, has been a friend of my dads for years and he basically convinced us to give it a crack.
Chris Halesworth Motorsport purchased a former Hans Lovski Panther built racecar. After a couple of practice sessions at Redline Raceway the team then dropped the car off at Mick Kiraly’s Panther Chassis business to change and add a few things to bring the car up to date.
The first event for Chris Halesworth Motorsport was at Rushworth Speedway on October 24th, a track Halesworth had never run before. Early in proceedings, Halesworth struggled in hot laps & two heats with the car not turning at all & pushing terribly in the turns.
Before the third heat, Halesworth made a phone call to Kiraly who was at Etihad Stadium watching Speedway bikes, Kiraly suggested a few things to do and the team got cracking on changing the front end & shock set up. In heat three Halesworth felt much better in the car & could rive it the way he wanted to & figure out the track for himself, this boosted confidence & gave a point of direction.
Starting in fifteenth in the final for the twenty lap final, Halesworth settled in dicing with a fellow backmarker to just get into a rhythm & start to pass cars almost every lap, even passing three into turn three through traffic on one lap.
Up into seventh spot and a yellow flag was unfurled for a spun car & Halesworth found himself two places behind Jamie Collins who like himself started towards the rear of the pack. With around six laps to go Halesworth went a little to hot into turn one and bounced the car over a rut sending his car into a half spin, the racer behind had nowhere to go and slammed into the front end of the car forcing Halesworth to retire.
Halesworth shared his thoughts on his first crack at AMCA racing. “I had a ball for my first race meeting in the AMCA and I can't wait to get back out! We will be aiming to do all the Victorian meets and possibly a meet in South Australia and the Australian title at Lismore in New South Wales.”
Also Halesworth went on to thank a few people. “I can't thank my dad John, Jamie & Phil Collins, Blake and my girlfriend Ashleigh enough for their help and support! Also a big thanks to my sponsors who have jumped onboard this season, Kinnear Equipment, Technique Bricklaying, Geelong Signs, Coppe Concrete and Earth, One Vision Creations.”
Written by Dean Thompson DMT Sports Media for Chris Halesworth Motorsport