PICKENS SWEEPS THE 50 FROM THE BACK
Official release: Valvoline Raceway
April 29, 2017
NZ Superstar Michael Pickens is the 2017 Ballistic by Berklee Speedcar 50-Lapper victor.
Steering his rapid #1 Yale SG Equipment TRD powered King Chassis Pickens moved from position #23 to the #1 spot in the A-Main and never surrendered it to lead home Darren Jenkins in second place and West Aussie Dayne Kingshott third.
A crash involving Pickens and Jay Hall in turn two early in the race saw the New Zealander begin his campaign from the rear but it wasn't long before he was hauling in early leader Darren Jenkins.
"I thought we had something for him," lamented Jenkins later, "he went out pretty hard pretty early and I was thinking we'd still have the speed to pull him in later. He's a pretty handy racer though isn't he."
Pickens' victory in the 50-lapper was his second consecutive victory at Valvoline Raceway in as many weeks having blasted to the win last Saturday night in the Speedcar Super Series finale and NSW Championship.
"We've had a blast here in Sydney the last two weeks," he grinned in victory lane, "I can't thank Brett and Leigh Morris from Seamount Racing for bringing out this car for me to race. I've really enjoyed racing against the Aussies at Parramatta and it's great to get another 50-lapper win."
Dayne Kingshott had to come from the rear of the field too at a restart when he tangled on the main straight with Pickens and damaged the exhaust on the #21 MAC Chassis.
Defending 50-lapper champion Adam Clarke stormed to fourth place and in doing so won the $250 "Brown dog Hard Charger Award" put up my Mark and Belinda Brown.
On a night that tributed Mark Brown as he officially said goodbye to active driving duties his son Kaidon put in a blinder to finish fifth between two 50-lapper stars Adam Clarke and Nathan Smee (sixth).
Matty Jackson finished seventh (admitting he missed the set up) ahead of Travis Mills in eighth, the returned Jaimie McKinlay in the Stephen Dillon #9 in ninth and Kiwi racer Brock Maskovich rounding out the top ten.
Adam Wallis was eleventh ahead of Bob Jackson twelfth, Joe Lostich thirteenth, Jack Black fourteenth, Jay Hall fifteenth, Alan Day sixteenth and Darren Salmon classified as the last car running in seventeenth.
Day managed to earn a spot in the A-Main as first reserve when the hapless Kiwi Hayden Williams had a motor issue before even firing a shot in the Jason Bell #82 TRD Boss.
DNF's were Mick Saller, Sam Walsh, Jamie Hall, Troy Jenkins, Braydan Willmington, Michael Stewart, Gary Rooke (rolled), Reagan Angel (rolled) and Hayden Williams (DNS).
Reagan Angel's flip in the ARA #71X was the biggest of the night when he rode the wheel of Gary Rooke and inverted big time into turn one.
Angel was fortunately uninjured in the wreck.
Two of the sensations of the 50-lapper race event were actually Sprintcar drivers.
Sammy Walsh had the Paul Murphy #4 Fontana really rocking and was a possible podium contender whilst Mick Saller ran the #87 Aidan Corish entry with considerable aplomb for someone in only his second VR Speedcar appearance.
50-Lapper Official results
1. Michael Pickens
2. Darren Jenkins
3. Dayne Kingshott
4. Adam Clarke
5. Kaidon Brown
6. Nathan Smee
7. Matt Jackson
8. Travis Mills
9. Jaimie McKinlay
10. Brock Maskovich
11. Adam Wallis
12. Bob Jackson
13. Joe Lostich
14. Jack Black
15. Jay Hall
16. Alan Day
17. Darren Salmon
18. Mick Saller DNF
19. Sam Walsh DNF
20. Jamie Hall DNF
21. Troy Jenkins DNF
22. Braydan Willmington DNF
23. Michael Stewart DNF
24. Gary Rooke
25. Reagan Angel
26. Hayden Williams DNS
Oldfield Takes Ten
Archerfield Speedway Media Release
In another of the barnstorming performances for which he has become synonymous, Luke Oldfield scorched to his tenth feature race for the season when he chased down Andrew Scheuerle to win round 15 of the East Coast Logistics Sprintcar Track Championship at Ausdeck Patios Archerfield Speedway on Saturday night (April 29). Scheuerle looked a certain winner for a considerable portion of the race until a deflating tyre made its presence felt and left him with no answer to Oldfield's challenge. In his best result of the season, Brent Kratzmann snared third spot ahead of Pater Lack, Cody Maroske and David Whell, with Dan Murray, Brad Ayers, Allan Woods and Mark Pholi completing the top ten.
The Danny Davidson Memorial feature race for Midgets saw Troy Ware lead every lap to take the win ahead of Brock Dean, who saw off the best efforts of Rusty Whittaker to secure second spot. Darren Vine filled fourth ahead of Brendan Palmer and Michael Harders with Scott Doyle bouncing back from a heat race rollover to secure seventh.
Scheurele started his bounce back from a previous round DNF in the best possible way when he stopped the clock at 11.778 to KRE Quick Time in Sprintcar qualifying, edging out Callum Walker (11.792), Ben Hilder (11.878), Lack (11.905), Dave Murcott (11.934) and Oldfield (11.939), with Kevin Titman and Kratzmann the only others to drop below 12 seconds.
Despite starting deep in the field, Scheurele stormed through the field in the opening heat to finish second behind Brett Minett, with Pholi home in third spot.
The second heat saw Woods prevail over Mitch Gowland and Ayers, with Kratzmann keeping Davd Murcott at bay for fourth in what would be the two-time national champs' final fling for the night, retiring from his next heat and subsequently failing to start the feature.
Heat three went to Whell in advance of Andrew Corbet and Hilder before Oldfield demolished the field in heat four, surging from position row three to finish more than six seconds clear of Andrew Marks, with Dan Murray third.
Titman triumphed in heat five from Liebke and Kristy Bonsey, with Pholi wrapping up the preliminaries with a win over Mick Sauer and Lack in the final heat.
The Lucas Oils Dash saw Scheuerle hold onto the top spot when selected pole position for the 6-lapper and promptly led throughout to defeat Titman, Kratzmann, Walker, Oldfield, Whell and Hilder, with Lack riding the turn four wall and tipping over with two laps to run.
The East Coast Logistics B Main saw Pholi lead the field home, with Sauer, Bonsey and Woods also making the transfer into the feature event.
The feature race only got as far as turn one at the first attempt before Titman found himself upside down, advancing Walker to the outside front row for the restart. It was Scheuerle though who would lead the field away at the next attempt, with walker slotting into second ahead Kratzmann and Oldfield, with another interruption coming on lap three when Minett tipped over in turn three. Scheuerle led away again and just as Walker looked on target to secure his first podium result, he tagged the wall in turn four to bring his challenge to an end. Having already moved ahead of Kratzmann, Walker's demise moved Oldfield into second spot and he wasted little time in rounding up Scheuerle, slipping underneath as they negotiated lapped traffic. Once in front, Oldfield cleared away to finish more than six second ahead as Scheuerle soldiered on to salvage second ahead of Kratzmann. Fourth was a fine result for Lack given his Dash dramas, while Maroske made good ground to finagle fifth ahead of Whell, Murray, with Ayers the last runner on the lead lap. Woods, Pholi, Bonsey, Hilder, Brodie Tulloch, Andrew Marks and Mick Sauer were the remaining finishers.
Midget heats wins were shared between Ware, Vine, Whittaker and Dean, but it was Ware who proved unstoppable in the 20-lap Polar Ice Danny Davidson Memorial. Whilst Ware was in control out front, the battle for the minor placings was frantic as Whitaker, Vine and Palmer swapped spots in their pursuit of second-placed Dean. Running third after four laps, Whitaker had dropped back to fifth after nine circulations before moving forward again to break clear of the battle pack and reel in Dean. On lap 15, Whittaker advanced to second, only for Dean to reclaim the position with two laps to run. Vine and Palmer, both of whom had podium spots in their grasp at some stage before succumbing to Whittaker's challenge, filled the top five ahead of Harders, Doyle and Dallas Sharp. In a depleted field, Rob Stewart, Gavin McDowell and Tony Eickenlkoff completed the finishers, while Charlie Brown's run of outs continued when he spluttered infield just when a top five finish was looking a real possibility.
Next Saturday night at Ausdeck Patios Archerfield Speedway (May 6) will feature Super Sedans and Dirt Modifieds, plus Compact Speedcars and Modlites. The final two rounds of the East Coast Logistics Sprintcar Track Championship will be held on May 13 and May 27.