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  • In yet another narrow result in East Coast Logistics Sprintcar Track Championship competition, Mitchell Gee prevailed in the twin feature format at Ausdeck Patios Archerfield Speedway on Saturday night (November 25), emerging victorious by a solitary point over Luke Oldfield on combined results from the two races. Gee took out the opening leg over Oldfield and Andrew Scheuerle before inverting the top eight finishers for the second stanza. Despite finishing fifth in the second 20-lapper behind Oldfield, Gee had done enough to secure the trophy and consolidate second place overall in the championship standings.

    In round four of the Polar Ice Midget Track Championship, a late-race pass propelled Darren Vine to his third feature race win of the year. Scott Farmer enjoyed a sizeable lead for much of the race but ultimately had to settle for a runner-up result for the second time in as many outings. Reid Mackay raced into third spot to secure his best result of the season, seeing off the best efforts of Mitchell Rooke and Darren Dillon on his passage to the podium.

    On a track that changed considerably across the various time trial sessions, it was Scheuerle who emerged with the quickest lap, stopping the clock at 11.842 to pip Gee (11.875) and West Aussie teenager Kaiden Manders (11.955) in his first outing for the Horrall Motorsport team. Cody Maroske was fourth fastest, followed by Mark Pholi, Callum Walker, Ben Hilder, Peter Lack and Adam Butler, with Oldfield only managing tenth overall.

    The opening heat of the night saw Brad Ayers outpace Stewart Craig and Hilder, with Andrew Liebke downing Lack and Gee in the heat two.

    An impressive drive from Minett carried him to a win over Brent Kratzmann and Dylan Menz in heat three, with Kratzmann finishing second again in heat four, this time behind Gee but comfortably clear of third-placed Hilder.

    Dave Whell led home Menz and Scheuerle in winning heat five before Anthony Lambert scored a rousing result the final preliminary, leading Oldfield and Craig to the chequer as Lack suffered a setback when he was unable to avoid an errant Kevin Titman in turn four and ended his race upside down.

    Development Sprintcar heat wins went by way of Andrew Baumber and Peter Campbell, who then secured his third feature race win in a row in downing Kris Jennings, Aleesha Woods and Liam Atkinson in the C Main.

    Andrew Liebke took out the B Main, leading Titman, Nelson Reddacliff and Lambert in transferring into the main event.

    The first segment of the feature event looked on track to run without interruption until a spin from Manders with just three laps to run proved costly, taking him out of the inversion for the second leg. Gee led the opening 12 laps before Scheuerle shot to the front, only for Gee to reclaim the lead two laps later and then repel the rapid advances of Oldfield in the closing stages to take the win. Behind Gee, Oldfield and Scheuerle came Hilder, Walker, Kratzmann, Maroske and Whell, who would start from pole position in the second race after Gee drew an 8-car invert to spice up proceedings.

    Taking full advantage of his good fortune, Whell powered into the lead of the decider as Scheureles hopes evaporated when he tagged the wall in turn four and headed infield. From the restart Whell led again from Maroske and Callum Walker, who quickly advanced to second and looked to be on his way to the front until a flat tyre intervened and forced him to the grass. Whilst Maroske deposed Whell on lap 12, most interest centred on the efforts of Gee and Oldfield to advance their overall positions in pursuit of victory. In the end, whilst neither Gee nor Oldfield could budge Kratzmann from third spot, Gee had done enough to sneak home by the merest of margins, leaving Oldfield to rue his third runner-up finish for the season. Hilder was the best of the rest, leading home Titman, Lack and Manders, with Reddacliff proving the best of the B main transferees in advancing eight positions to clinch a top-ten result. Maroske finished third overall on combined results ahead of Kratzmann and Whell.

    Vine enjoyed an unbeaten run through the Midget program, winning both of his heats before his feature race heroics. Farmer also collected a heat win, as did Rooke in what was a sign of his strong showing to come in the feature. With the likes of Rusty Whittaker and Troy Ware taking no part in the feature, the loss of Scott Doyle, Adam Wallis and Dallas Sharp on the opening left just 13 cars to complete the 25-lap distance. Farmer zoomed to the front and held a substantial advantage at the halfway mark, only to find his margin being reduced with considerable rapidity through the latter stages as Vine closed in, making the critical pass with just a couple of laps to run. Mackay maintained third throughout, despite plenty of attention from Rooke and Dillon, with Brad Young, Rodney Harders, Brad Harrison, Audie Malt and Michael Harders rounding out the top ten.

    Lightning Sprint heat wins were shared between Keith Blatch, Sean Iacono and Wayne Iacono, but there was no stopping Aaron Kelly in the feature race. After rounding up the field around the outside, Kelly chased down Jason Rae in rapid time and then cleared away to finish more than six seconds clear of Rae and third-placed Keith Blatch, with Kirsty Kelly and Jeremy Hassall the best of the rest.

    Although down in numbers, the AMCA National racing was very close with Russ Hardy, Steve Price and Matt Hardy collecting heat wins. In the feature race, Matt Hardy proved too strong, leading Price, Russ Hardy, Steve Potts and Michael Mason to the chequer.

    After winning two of the three heats, Ronnie Young prevailed in the Ford vs Holden vs Sigma feature race, outpacing Matthew Hannigan and Michael Laver.

    Racing continues next Saturday night at Ausdeck Patios Archerfield Speedway (December 2) with a triple-bill program featuring Super Sedans, Dirt Modifieds and Late Models, along with Modlites and Open Sedans.
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