Last Night, for a special Wednesday night show, twenty-nine Sprintcars rolled into Ausdeck Patios and Roofing Archerfield Speedway for Round Seven of World Series Sprintcars, and the last appearance of Donny Schatz at the venue this season. And what a night of racing it was! On one of the best tracks we have seen at Archerfield this festive season the night culminated in a thrilling thirty-five-lap A-Main, with a four-way battle for the lead and a captivating challenge for the lead in the final few laps of the race. Donny Schatz had control but Jamie Veal challenged hard, getting his nose in front on the final lap while in heavy lapped traffic. Schatz found some extra momentum as they exited the final corner of the race, racing back around the high side of Veal and drag racing him across the line. Donny Schatz got the win, just 0.280 seconds ahead of Jamie Veal, while Queenslander Luke Oldfield managed to get third after an epic battle with James McFadden early in the race. Kerry Madsen finished a solid fourth while Peter Lack advanced from ninth to fifth by the fall of the chequered flag. Lachlan McHugh again won the Hard Charger Award for his efforts, having made his way to ninth after once again transferring from the B-Main, while James McFadden exited the race, while running in third, with only four laps to run after suffering front end damage as he made his way through lapped traffic.
Qualifying got underway and while Luke Oldfield set the early benchmark, Donny Schatz came out mid-way through the qualifying order and stopped the clock at 11.354 seconds to secure Quick Time for qualifying. Luke Oldfield (11.424) remained second quickest while Jack Lee (11.439), Brad Keller (11.457) and Brooke Tatnell (11.467) rounded out the fastest five. Mitchell Wormall beat Andrew Scheuerle by 0.001 seconds, while Jessie Attard beat Brent Kratzmann by the same margin, deeper in the qualifying order, Randy Morgan and Andrew Corbet recorded identical times. Ryan McNamara had power steering issues in hot laps that prevented him from taking part in qualifying. The top twenty-seven (of twenty-nine) cars were separated by only 0.631 seconds and set us up for a brilliant night of racing.
Heat one started with Jye O'Keefe and Danny Porter from the front row, with O'Keefe securing the lead ahead of Porter and Rusty Hickman when the lights went green. James McFadden made his way underneath Logan Schuchart while Donny Schatz ran the top side to get around Jason Pryde. Jock Goodyer got underneath Pryde a lap later while Schatz started putting pressure on Schuchart, and McFadden began trying to find a way past Hickman. Schuchart unexpectedly began to rapidly slow as they rounded turn three before coming to a stop on the main straight, unable to limp the USA #1s car to the infield, terminal engine problems sadly ending his night very prematurely. O'Keefe led the restart from Porter and Hickman, and while Hickman immediately came under fire from a hard-charging McFadden, further back in the field Jason Pryde and Jock Goodyer traded places as they fought over the minor positions. Jye O'Keefe got the win ahead of Danny Porter and Rusty Hickman, with James McFadden fourth across the line ahead of Donny Schatz, Jason Pryde, Jock Goodyer, Randy Morgan and Sean Rose. Logan Schuchart did not finish the race.
Heat two saw Gold Coast based racer Lachlan McHugh start from pole position with fellow Queenslander Clem Hoffmans alongside. While McHugh and Hoffmans raced side-by-side towards the first corner it was not long before McHugh pulled ahead to secure the lead, leaving Hoffmans with both Brent Kratzmann and Kerry Madsen on his tail. Madsen worked the high line to get the better of Kratzmann before switching to the bottom to go underneath Hoffmans as they rounded turn two. Kratzmann began challenging Hoffmans for third while deeper in the field Brooke Tatnell and Steven Lines negotiated over mid-field positions and Luke Oldfield tried to race around both Tatnell and Lines. Lines won out, not only keeping Oldfield behind and getting ahead of Tatnell, but also racing underneath Hoffmans just moments after Hoffmans surrendered his position to the Q2 of Kratzmann. Lines was pushing hard on the bottom, quickly turning his attention to Kratzmann after displacing Hoffmans, charging through on the bottom in an effort to move into third. Kratzmann fought back hard, the pair racing two abreast for half a lap before Lines emerged in front and began chasing after Madsen. Oldfield took to the high line and raced around Hoffmans before spending a couple of laps closing in on the back of Tatnell, the Q17 racer then switching to the low side to slide beautifully underneath the V55 racer as they navigated turn two, and set his sights on Kratzmann. It took a few laps for Oldfield to catch Kratzmann, and a couple of unsuccessful attempts to get past, but Oldfield soon made his way through on the bottom to slip into fourth just a couple of laps from home. Lachlan McHugh got the win ahead of Kerry Madsen and Steven Lines, with Luke Oldfield securing fourth. Brent Kratzmann crossed the line in fifth and led Brooke Tatnell, Clem Hoffmans, Andrew Corbet, Mitchell Wormall and Ryan McNamara to the chequered flag.
Heat three started with Carson Macedo and Tim Farrell leading the field of nine to the green, with Macedo quickly securing the advantage as they raced through turn one. Farrell settled into second but had both Peter Lack and Jessie Attard on his tail. Andrew Scheuerle and Jack Lee fought over mid-field positions, with Scheuerle coming out in front and setting out after Jamie Veal, while Attard continued to challenge Lack for position. A few laps into the race saw Lack make his way underneath Farrell, leaving Farrell to try and defend his position form both Attard and Veal. Contact between Farrell and Attard as they entered turn three left Attard with a flat right front tyre and saw him fade quickly before withdrawing from the event. Carson Macedo got the win ahead of Peter Lack while Tim Farrell withstood unrelenting pressure from Jamie Veal in the final few laps of the race to secure third. Jamie Veal crossed the line in fourth ahead of Andrew Scheuerle, Jack Lee, Brad Keller and Mitch Gowland with Jessie Attard rounding out the field.
Randy Morgan and Jye O'Keefe shared the front row for the start of heat four, with Rusty Hickman and Mitchell Wormall from the second row. O'Keefe led the way through turn one in advance of Morgan and Hickman, while Peter Lack made it look easy as he slipped underneath Wormall as they raced through the second corner. James McFadden and Donny Schatz began to make their way forward, with McFadden leading the charge as he got underneath Wormall. Schatz had an unsuccessful look underneath Wormall as they rounding turn four before switching to the top side to begin searching the high line half a lap later. Schatz was committed to the high side while Jock Goodyer had a look on the bottom, and while Schatz raced around the top, Goodyer and Wormall came together in turn four as Goodyer tried to get underneath the W97 racer of Wormall, the contact ending with Goodyer tipping the T22 racer on its side. O'Keefe led the restart from Lack and Morgan with eight laps still to run. Hickman challenged Morgan for third when the race resumed, but Morgan fought back to maintain his position, while James McFadden quickly slipped through a small opening to settle in between Morgan and Hickman briefly before getting underneath Morgan as they rounded turn two a lap later. Donny Schatz was quick to follow McFadden on the bottom, racing underneath both Hickman and Morgan in quick succession before catching McFadden and challenging him for third. Jye O'Keefe got the win ahead of Peter Lack while Schatz clipped the back straight wall and lost ground on McFadden late in the race. James McFadden crossed the line in third with Donny Schatz still managing fourth ahead of Mitchell Wormall, Rusty Hickman and Randy Morgan. Andrew Corbet and Ryan McNamara completed just two laps of the race while Jock Goodyer was unable to restart after his incident early in the race.
Heat five saw Jessie Attard and Brent Kratzmann share the front row for the start, with Attard quickly securing the lead ahead of Kratzmann, while Luke Oldfield had an absolutely brilliant run around the top side, getting around Brooke Tatnell and Andrew Scheuerle and was attempting to race around the high side of Lachlan McHugh, Jason Pryde and Kerry Madsen with less than half a lap completed. Unfortunately chaos unfolded mid-field, ending with McHugh turned around after contact with Pryde, leaving Andrew Scheuerle nowhere to go, and the race was brought under caution. Both McHugh and Scheuerle restarted at the rear of the field while Attard and Kratzmann again led them to the green for a full restart. While Kratzmann got a better start second time around it was still Attard who secured the lead as they raced through turn one, leaving Kratzmann in second ahead of Madsen, who had quickly displaced Pryde from third. Oldfield again charged on the top side, getting the better of Brooke Tatnell on the start before spending a lap trying to get around Pryde and then turning his attention to Madsen, who was trying to make his way past Kratzmann. Oldfield persisted on the top side for several laps before slipping underneath Madsen as they raced out of turn two and down the back straight. Madsen of course fought back but Oldfield had already turned his attention to Kratzmann, racing underneath the Q2 racer a couple of laps later as they powered down the main straight. Madsen had an unsuccessful look underneath Kratzmann a few laps later, while behind them McHugh was trying to make up lost ground, moving his way forward and, eventually, getting underneath Brooke Tatnell as the race drew to a close. Jessie Attard got the win ahead of Luke Oldfield and Brent Kratzmann, while Kerry Madsen crossed the line in fourth ahead of Lachlan McHugh, Brooke Tatnell, Jason Pryde, Andrew Scheuerle and Mitch Gowland.
Clem Hoffmans and Tim Farrell led the field to the green for the start of the final heat event of the night, with Hoffmans getting the jump and leading them through the opening couple of corners. Carson Macedo almost immediately displaced Farrell from second, with Lines quick to follow on the bottom, while Brad Keller got underneath Jamie Veal and Danny Porter on the opening lap. Jack Lee had a phenomenal run on the bottom as well, following Keller past Veal and Porter before getting underneath Keller moments later, advancing three positions in just half a lap. Lee quickly caught and passed Farrell, before spending a few laps searching for a way past Hoffmans, leaving Hoffmans with Veal and Keller on his tail. The race was soon brought to a stop though when Tim Farrell spectacularly inverted the NQ10 racer in turn three. Porter was also involved while Sean Rose spun in an effort to avoid contact with still airborne Farrell. Farrell was able to get the car restarted, and was promptly given the mechanical defect flag by WSS officials, allowing him to withdraw from the event whilst still receiving heat race points. Macedo, Lines and Lee led the restart with four laps left to run and while Hoffmans tried to hold off the advances of Keller and Veal, there was little he could do as the hard-charging duo raced underneath the Q3 racer as they rounded turn two. Veal got the better of Keller half a lap later and set out after Lee, but there was no stopping Carson Macedo as he raced to victory ahead of Steven Lines. Jack Lee finished fourth ahead of Jamie Veal and Brad Keller, while Sean Rose, Clem Hoffmans and Danny Porter rounded out the finishers. Tim Farrell did not finish the event.
The Bronze Shootout saw Steven Lines, Brad Keller, Brooke Tatnell and Jamie Veal take to the track for a series of qualifying laps. Veal was the quickest of the quartet, securing his transfer to the Silver Shootout, with Brad Keller going second quickest and securing a transfer of his own. Brooke Tatnell and Steven Lines were eliminated from the shootout events. Jack Lee and James McFadden joined Veal and Keller on track for the Silver Shootout, with Veal and Keller again topping the leader board at the conclusion of the run. Veal again secured the quickest time, just 0.009 seconds quicker than Keller, and both transferred to the Gold Shootout while McFadden and Lee were eliminated from the event. Luke Oldfield led the points going into the Shootout events and he and Donny Schatz joined Jamie Veal and Brad Keller on track for the Gold Shootout. Luke Oldfield managed to secure quick time, a 12.559 second lap, and earn pole position for the main event, while Donny Schatz (12.716) did enough to secure second and earn a front row start for the A-Main alongside Oldfield. Jamie Veal and Brad Keller rounded out the Gold Shootout contenders.
Jock Goodyer and Lachlan McHugh led the twelve-car field to the green for the start of the fifteen-lap B-Main, with Goodyer quickly securing the lead and leaving McHugh in second while Rusty Hickman got the better of Danny Porter. Porter soon surrendered a position to a hard-charging Jessie Attard, then to Randy Morgan a few laps later, and while Porter challenged Morgan in an effort to regain his position, the race was brought under caution for the spun car of Sean Rose in turn three. By this stage McHugh had secured the lead ahead of Goodyer and led the restart, with Goodyer in second ahead of Hickman and Attard. Hickman challenged Goodyer when the race resumed, with Attard soon joining the fight and slipping underneath Hickman to separate the two briefly before Hickman fired back as they raced through turn one, getting underneath Attard and regaining his position. Attard and Hickman soon caught Goodyer and what followed was an intense battle for the minor places, with Attard momentarily securing second only to make a small mistake in turn two and fall back into the battle with Hickman and Goodyer. Lachlan McHugh got the win, comfortably leading Jock Goodyer across the line. Rusty Hickman finished third ahead of Jessie Attard with Randy Morgan completing the top five. Danny Porter was sixth across the line, while Andrew Corbet, Ryan McNamara, Mitch Gowland and Clem Hoffmans rounded out the finishers. Sean Rose did not finish the event.
Twenty cars lined up for a star-studded A-Main with Luke Oldfield and Donny Schatz to lead them away. Oldfield got the best start and quickly secured the lead, while Jamie Veal challenged Schatz for second and James McFadden made his way underneath Brad Keller. From deep in the field Brent Kratzmann and Lachlan McHugh started making their way forward, with Kratzmann getting past Jason Pryde, Andrew Scheuerle and Jye O'Keefe on the opening lap before challenging Mitchell Wormall and Carson Macedo for position. Jamie Veal secured the advantage over Schatz and was charging hard on the bottom, having a bold look underneath Oldfield and challenging for the lead. Veal made his way in front of Oldfield and took control of the race, but less than a lap later the race was brought under caution for Andrew Scheuerle who had spun to a stop in turn two. Scheuerle restarted at the rear of the field, while Oldfield regained the lead for the restart.
With only two laps completed Luke Oldfield led the restart from Jamie Veal, Donny Schatz and James McFadden. Brooke Tatnell held down a solid fifth while the leading quartet stole the show with a breath-taking battle for control. Veal and Schatz started working the high line trying to find a way around Oldfield, while McFadden charged on the bottom, going three abreast with Schatz and Veal as they rounded turn four. Oldfield was almost a car length in front as they entered turn one, followed by Veal, while McFadden got the better of Schatz, but Veal had incredible speed on the top side and raced around Oldfield as they made their through turn one, taking control of the race once more as they headed for turn two. McFadden looked underneath Oldfield as Schatz tried to race around them both, with Oldfield hanging on to second and Schatz getting back in front of McFadden. The race was however soon brought to another stop as chaos unfolded deep in the field. Rusty Hickman was trying to make his way forward, but contact with Brent Kratzmann in turn two left Kratzmann with a damaged front end and heading down track. Lachlan McHugh took evasive action, leaving a luckless Jason Pryde nowhere to go, with Pryde then also making unavoidable contact with Kratzmann. Both Kratzmann and Pryde collided with the concrete wall on the edge of the infield on the back straight and while both drivers walked away, they were both unable to restart the event.
Jamie Veal this time led the restart from Luke Oldfield, Donny Schatz and James McFadden with thirty-laps still to run. Once the race returned to green light conditions, Schatz quickly raced underneath Oldfield less than one lap into the restart and set his sights on Veal, challenging him on the high line before switching to the bottom and racing underneath Veal as they approached turn three a few laps later. Oldfield stayed close behind while deeper in the field Lachlan McHugh was trying to make his way past Rusty Hickman, while Carson Macedo, Mitchell Wormall and Steven Lines negotiated over mid-field positions. Schatz quickly began pulling away, opening a very comfortable margin on Veal, while McFadden closed in on Oldfield and began challenging for third. While the battle between Oldfield and McFadden was just starting to heat up, Andrew Scheuerle had begun climbing his way back through the field after the earlier stoppage and was challenging McHugh for position, while Peter Lack quietly worked his way past Jack Lee and set out after Brad Keller. McHugh found his way past Steven Lines, leaving Lines to try and defend his position from a determined Scheuerle, while Schatz weaved his way through the back markers. The race for third was at fever-pitch with the pair of #17 racers (McFadden and Oldfield) holding nothing back as they put on a thrilling show for race fans on the hill. Contact between the right rear of McFadden and the left front of Oldfield as they raced out of turn four, with Oldfield squeezed high against the wall, saw McFadden gain the advantage, while Oldfield dropped back a few car lengths. Scheuerle and Lines raced side-by-side for several laps before Scheuerle secured the advantage, while McHugh was absolutely relentless in his pursuit of Hickman, eventually getting underneath the V40 racer as they rounded turn four. Hickman fought back on the high line half a lap later but could not quite regain the position, while McHugh wasted no time in getting underneath Mitchell Wormall and leaving the W97 to separate McHugh and Hickman. Veal closed in on Schatz in lapped traffic, the V35 racer timing his run almost perfectly, having a big look on the inside of Schatz and challenging for control of the race with only a few laps left to run. Veal persisted, unyielding and unrelenting, for the rest of the race, trying both the high and low lines and searching for a way past Schatz as the laps wore on. With the white flag in the air and lapped traffic just ahead Veal committed to the bottom, charging underneath Schatz as they rounded turns one and two on the final lap. Schatz maintained the advantage on the top side with Veal having one last final look as they raced through the final two corners of the race. Schatz had one last burst of momentum as they exited the final corner, racing just ahead of Veal and beating him to the chequered flag by just 0.280 seconds. Donny Schatz got the win ahead of Jamie Veal, while Luke Oldfield crossed the line in third after James McFadden exited the race with four laps left to run. Kerry Madsen finished fourth while Peter Lack managed to climb his way into an impressive fifth by the time he crossed the line. Brooke Tatnell was sixth home ahead of Brad Keller, Jack Lee, Lachlan McHugh, Mitchell Wormall, Carson Macedo, Andrew Scheuerle, Rusty Hickman, Jessie Attard, Steven Lines, Jock Goodyer and Jye O'Keefe. James McFadden, Brent Kratzmann and Jason Pryde did not finish the event.
It has been a massive couple of weeks of racing, with plenty to keep us all entertained. We now have a very short break here in South East Queensland before we return to Ausdeck Patios and Roofing Archerfield Speedway on Wednesday 23 January 2019 for the Prelude to the Championship. We will then return to Archerfield Speedway on Saturday 26th and Sunday 27th January 2019 where BK Trading will present the 57th Australian Sprintcar Championship, with the biggest field of Sprintcars seen at the Brisbane venue. It is going to be an absolutely MASSIVE week of Sprintcar racing and we cannot wait to see you there...