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  • Warrnambool’s Jamie Veal joined his Father Ken as a Victorian Sprintcar Champion as he put an end to the Title reign of David Murcott at the Sungold Stadium, Premier Speedway at Warrnambool on what was a bitterly cold evening. After starting from position two alongside Murcott, the pair traded slide jobs on the opening lap before Veal made the decisive move on lap nine and from that point he was never headed, although he was challenged in lapped traffic by eventual third placed Darren Mollenoyux.

    Unfortunately, just after the mid race point the track began to rubber up with the back half of the race being a race around the bottom but prior the race had been an entertaining one with Murcott, Veal and Luke Oldfield running the top with precision.

    With the bottom stating to come in Mollenoyux was the first to find the rubber charging from sixth to second in six laps. An unsuccessful attempt for the lead showed Veal the fast way around with the #35 driver quickly switching to the bottom. “Molly” would hold the runner-up spot until four laps from home when Murcott forced his way by.

    The fact that Mollenoyux was even in the feature event was an epic feat after he damaged the engine in the #52 resulting in an engine change. But it wasn’t a standard engine change as the spare engine was in the spare car back at the workshop in Warrnambool. A mad dash back into town saw the team rip out the spare, put it in the back of a ute and then reinsert it into the race car at the track. That effort was worth a podium result on its own!

    Fourth place went the way of Grant Anderson with Corey McCullagh having a relatively quiet night, but he still recorded a solid result. The top 10 were completed by Tim Hutchins, Jye O’Keeffe, Rusty Hickman, Luke Oldfield, who faded late due to missing the rubber and persisting with running the top, and Terry Rankin. McFadden found it tough to progress as he finished eleventh.

    Earlier the heats ran pretty well without incident, except for a pile up in the opening turn of heat 1, with eight different heat winners. Throughout the night all but two heat of the preliminary heats were won from the front row. The opening round saw the fastest qualifiers from the front with Jamie Veal, Ryan Jones, Terry Rankin and Tim Hutchins all successful. With the heats being inverted in round two, Grant Anderson won what was the heat of the night starting from position five outrunning Veal and Mollenoyux. Heat six saw Robert Nicholas claim a dramatic heat win in his “old school” looking #VA51 while Lisa Walker and Jye O’Keeffe rounded out the winners.

    The second round of heats saw the demise of Ryan Jones, who failed to front after damaging his engine during his heat win, while James McFadden recorded a DNS after encountering engine dramas of his own.

    Robert Paton was an impressive winner of the C-Main while McFadden drove from position seven to lead the B-Main field across the line. Joining McFadden as transferees to the Victorian Title main event were Robert Nicholas, John Vogels, Mark Carlin, Brayden Parr and veteran Mike Van Bremen.

    Information supplied by Phil Michell
    All Photos supplied by Local Sprintcar Photography
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